Bollywood star Deepika Padukone questioned by India's narcotics agency
Deepika Padukone has been questioned by India’s narcotics agency as part of an investigation into the film industry following the death of the actor Sushant Singh Rajput.
The Bollywood star was among three actors summoned by the Narcotics Control Board (NCB) for questioning on Saturday.
The 34-year-old had received a summons earlier in the week while shooting a movie in the western beach resort of Goa and was questioned for several hours at NCB’s Mumbai office.
Meanwhile, the actors Shraddha Kapoor and Sara Ali Khan were questioned separately at another NCB office. None have been accused by the authorities of any wrongdoing. Details of the questioning were not immediately available.
The trio are among more than a dozen people working with the Hindi movie industry who have been summoned by the NCB in the past two weeks. Padukone’s manager, Karishma Prakash, was also questioned on Friday.
Earlier this week, TV channel TimesNow broadcast sections of a WhatsApp conversation about procuring hash, alleging that the two people chatting were Padukone and Prakash.
The narcotics agency said in a statement that it started the Bollywood drug investigation after the death of Rajput.
The 34-year-old, who starred in several blockbusters, was found dead at his Mumbai home in June. An investigation is ongoing.
His former girlfriend, Rhea Chakraborty, 28, was arrested earlier this month on suspicion of buying him cannabis – a claim she has denied – and this week was denied bail.
Rajput’s family dispute reports that he suffered from depression and have openly accused the actor of stealing his money and harassing him.
Chakraborty, who has been subject to intense media coverage and speculation, denies any wrongdoing.
Director Karan Johar meanwhile, who has also been a target of TV channels and social media users since Rajput’s death, released a statement on Friday rejecting claims that drugs were consumed at a party that he hosted at his home last year.
His response came after an old video from a star-studded party at his residence surfaced on social media.