Following Sushant Singh Rajput’s death, film personalities have come on the radar of Narcotics, including top celebrities! In fact, Kangana Ranaut, who kept calling her own fraternity out, was also named for once consuming drugs. But the celebrity drug exposé is not a new happening at all; in 2020 via a plethora of front page headlines, we witnessed the public descent of A-listers for the same subject.
Barely a week went by without stories of celebrities nipping into the drug consumption radar or admitting to having a rage habit of overriding themselves with cocaine. However, despite all the coverage, it was hard to find out how much of it was real addiction or simply another PR stunt. The drug scandal is so popular with the press, that journalists tried their best to weave it into a story, even if evidence against these actors was flimsy at its best. Let’s have a look at the actors who were under the drugs scanner in 2020:
The Central Crime Branch of Bengaluru probed the drug menace in the Kannada film industry and arrested actor Ragini Dwivedi after questioning her following a raid at her residence. A team of CCB sleuths, including women officials, had reached Dwivedi’s residence at Judicial Layout in North-East Bengaluru at around 6 am after obtaining a search warrant from the court. Police said that important materials were seized from her house! Meanwhile, the CCB had served a notice to the actress asking her to depose before them but she sent a team of lawyers seeking time till next week.
The police directed her to appear before them on an immediate notice. In a tweet, Ragini had said that she would appear before the police on Monday morning. “I am grateful for all the concern expressed by the public about a notice I received yesterday. As I received it at very short notice, I was unable to appear today before the CCB police. However out of respect for the process of the law, my advocates have presented themselves before the police and have explained my difficulty in not being able to appear today and have sought time. I am committed to appear on Monday morning before the police,” she posted on the micro-blogging site.
For some actors, drugs are considered more than just a lifestyle trait. When newcomers enter films and upgrade their standards, they do not rely on monthly pay cheques. They move on from travelling in an auto-rickshaw to being driven around in cars and from living in rented houses to setting up their own apartments and suddenly they realise they have not only money but also rich and powerful friends now. Some even lack satisfaction, for which they resort to substance consumption.
News sources were probing such notions behind the arrest of famous Kannada actress Sanjjana Galrani who was last seen in a reality show. The infamous Sandalwood drugs case came to light in September when the Narcotics Control Bureau arrested a person, who had revealed how high-profile drug parties were organised in Bengaluru. As part of the investigation, the city police arrested several drug peddlers and subsequently it led to the arrest of Ragini Dwivedi first, followed by Sanjana Galrani a week later. Currently, Kannada actor has decided to appeal for her bail once again in the Karnataka High Court which is expected to come up for hearing sometime next week.
Entertainment space and controversies have a strong relation always. Whether the talk is about casting couch, drugs, nepotism, bias or connections to the high and mighty, every film industry has surely for long taken centre stage in the national media especially in 2020. Now, once again, Bollywood found itself in the public gaze with allegations of drug addiction surfacing with Deepika Padukone topping the list! The bollywood actor had a tough time past few months as she was grilled badly by the Narcotics Control Bureau for her alleged connections in the drug case. She at least spent five hours during her appearance at the NCB office. Her name surfaced after a series of Whatsapp chats allegedly implicated her in sourcing drugs through her manager, Karishma Prakash. In the Whatsapp chat in possession by the authorities, Deepika Padukone allegedly asks for “hash” in a conversation with her manager.
The scandal didn’t even spare Tollywood stars. It only added to tarnishing T-town’s image as well. With Narcotics questioning Rakulpreet Singh on the basis of a drug angle, unintentionally the telugu celebrity was making waves on every news channel and tabloid and became a bait for more controversies. Indeed, the drug problem amidst film stars is deep rooted but this one surely didn’t go well with the industry itself.
Many telugu stars came out in support of Rakul when the Narcotics Control Bureau had summoned the actor and she was being interrogated for more than four hours by a team who was probing the drug angle. According to reports Rakul who has been a part of anti-drug campaigns confessed that she had a chat with Rhea Chakrabrthy but strongly denied procuring or consuming any type of drugs. During the course of the interrogation with the NCB, Rakul Preet Singh also claimed that she had no relation with any drug peddlers. The probe kept widening on a daily basis and new names kept popping up every day.
People close to the industry authenticate that most of the celebrities are drug addicts and their high-end parties have a separate corner for consumption. As per film director Vivek Agnihotri’s claims, drug addiction have increased in film industries in the last ten years and it’s a common occurrence at parties. However, can it be a one-sided narrative? Very recently, actor Arjun Rampal appeared before the Narcotics Control Bureau office in Mumbai and was summoned in relation to the Bollywood drugs case.
His partner Gabriella Demetriades was also questioned earlier and her brother put behind bars in the case. It shows how showbiz is a life packed with money, fame and praise and is bound to be fraught with pleasure-seeking incidents and wickedness. As a minimum, the cases validate the same for a matter of fact.
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