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Sandalwood drug case gets hair twist

Sanjjanaa Galrani
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Sanjjanaa Galrani

Highlights

  • Ragini Dwivedi allegedly mixing her urine sample with water in order to manipulate the dope test
  • Sanjjanaa argued with the cops on duty and picked up a verbal duel with the hospital officials in KC General Government Hospital

Bengaluru: The Central Crime Branch, which is probing the multi-layered drugs supply case involving high-profile actors in the Sandalwood the industry had sent the hair follicle samples of Ragini Dwivedi and Sanjjanaa Galrani to the Forensic Science Lab (FSL) in Madiwala.

Both the Kannada actors have not been cooperating with the investigating authorities. While Sanjjanaa argued with the police officers on duty and picked up a verbal duel with the hospital officials in KC General Government Hospital refusing to undergo a dope test, her colleague Ragini Dwivedi went a step ahead by allegedly mixing her urine sample with water in order to manipulate the dope test. Ragini was taken to KC General Government Hospital last week for the urine sample to determine if she had consumed banned drugs. The specific test can detect if a person had consumed drugs in the last four to five months.

Ragini, the first high-profile arrest in the drug racket, was asked to undergo another urine test. Investigating officials have also gained access to chat records between two Ragini and a person by name Simon, an African national both apparently communicated in a coded language about drugs.

On Sunday, both actors were taken to the Forensic Science Lab (FSL) in Madiwala, to undergo forensic tests, including the hair follicle test.

Unlike in the past when Sanjjanaa had created a ruckus over such tests at KC General Government Hospital, both quietly followed the instructions, according to sources. Sources said compared with tests on urine, saliva or blood samples, the hair follicle test gave better results. "We have taken blood and urine samples also, but we thought about the hair follicle test," said the source.

Both actresses were arrested in a case related to alleged links of the drug mafia with Kannada film industry actors.

Along with Ragini and Sanjana, police custody of four of their associates -- Ravi Shankar, Rahul Shetty, Niyaz and Loum Pepper Samba -- was also extended till September 14. Officials have earlier gained access to chat records between two accused, Ravi Shankar (a close friend of Ragini Dwivedi) and Prashanth Ranka. Besides, they have also completed the search operation of high-profile event organiser Viren Khanna in Delhi.

More than 12 accused have been arrested charged under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), including 120b (criminal conspiracy), and the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act of 1985 under Sections 21, 21C, 27A, 27B, and section 29. The 12 accused are said to have held rave parties where select people would be invited including businessmen, celebrities, some film actors, disc jockeys, software engineers, and others who would be supplied with drugs for a price.

Former Karnataka minister late Jeevaraj Alva's son Aditya Alva, who is also the brother-in-law of Bollywood actor Vivek Oberoi, was among the 12 accused against whom the Bengaluru Central Crime Branch (CCB) had filed a suo moto FIR. Aditya (31) is the son of the late Jeevaraj Alva, who was the minister in Ramakrishna Hegde Cabinet, and danseuse Nandini Alva. The NCB conducted a raid at the residence of Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) Congress corporator Keshavamurthy and his son. The NCB zonal and Mumbai officials conducted raids at the Keshavamurthy's residence and issued a notice to his son Yashas to appear before the NCB on September 7 in connection with drug peddlers.

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