Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan's son cleared of drugs charges

India’s Narcotics Control Bureau arrested Aryan Khan and seven others on a cruise ship last October

Aryan Khan, son of Bollywood megastar Shah Rukh Khan, spent 22 days in a cell in Mumbai’s Arthur Road Jail before being released on bail last year. AP
Powered by automated translation

Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan’s son was cleared of drug charges on Friday, India’s Narcotics Control Bureau said, because of “lack of sufficient evidence”.

Aryan Khan, 24, and seven others were arrested by the bureau in October last year on a cruise ship off the Mumbai coast.

He spent 22 days in a cell in Mumbai’s Arthur Road Jail before being released on bail.

But after eight months of investigation, the anti-drugs agency named 14 people in a 6,000-page charge sheet. Mr Khan was not included in the filing.

“Based on the investigation carried out by the Special Investigation Team, a complaint against 14 persons is filed. Complaint against six others is not being filed due to lack of sufficient evidence,” the bureau said, without naming Mr Khan.

But Mr Khan’s lawyer Mukul Rohatgi confirmed that his client was among those who have not been named in the charge sheet and said that the superstar was “relieved”.

“I am relieved, and so must my clients be, including Shah Rukh Khan. The truth has prevailed. Ultimately, there was no material to charge this young man [Aryan Khan] or arrest him,” Mr Rohtagi told a news channel.

Mr Khan was detained by the agency after undercover officers disguised as passengers raided the Cordelia cruise ship mid-sea, as it sailed towards Goa.

Officers said they recovered 13 grams of cocaine, 5 grams of mephedrone, 21 grams of a cannabis concentrate, charas, and 22 pills of MDMA (ecstasy) from the suspects, including two drug dealers from Delhi and Haryana on-board the ship

He was later arrested under various sections of the stringent Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act.

But his lawyers had argued that he was merely invited as a guest on the cruise by a friend.

His arrest had shocked Bollywood and particularly Shah Rukh Khan, 55, who has largely remained a non-controversial figure in his three-decades public life.

Updated: May 27, 2022, 2:56 PM