In a recent development, Narcotics Control Bureau has been granted 14 days of judicial custody of the prime accused in the Sushant Singh Rajput case, Rhea Chakraborty. Rhea`s arrest came three days after her brother Showik Chakraborty, Sushant`s home manager Samuel Miranda, and his house helper Dipesh Sawant were arrested and sent in NCB custody till September 9 (Wednesday), besides two other drug peddlers Abdel Basit Parihar and Zaid Vilatra, who are also in NCB custody.
Rhea is set to be sent to jail on Wednesday morning by 10 am. The Bollywood actress was produced before the magistrate late on Tuesday evening, wherein the NCB sought her judicial custody. Here is all you need to know about the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) and the penalties they may enforce on the actress:
What is the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB)?
The NCB is federal law enforcement and intelligence agency under the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. The agency’s primary role is to combat drug trafficking and the use of illegal substances under the provisions of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act. The NCB was created on March 17, 1986, to enable the full implementation of The Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985.
The Director-General of the NCB is an officer of the Indian Police Service (IPS) or the Indian Revenue Service (IRS). The NCB is outside the ambit of the Right to Information Act under Section 24(1) of the RTI act 2005.
Why was Rhea Chakraborty arrested by the NCB?
Rhea Chakraborty was interrogated by the Narcotic Control Bureau for the three consecutive days and on September 8, Tuesday, the actress’ statements made it clear that she is an active member of a drug syndicate and used to procure drugs for the consumption of actor and boyfriend Sushant Singh Rajput.
The NCB, in its remand application, claimed that 28-year-old Rhea used to “manage the finances for drug procurement” along with Sushant Singh Rajput. She knew about “every delivery and payment” and sometimes confirmed payment and even the choice of drugs, the agency said.
The NCB also said Rhea Chakraborty’s brother Showik Chakraborty, who was arrested on Friday, has revealed that he used to facilitate drug delivery through Basit Parihar by Kaizan Ebrahim and Zaid. These three men are drug dealers and have been arrested.
What are the charges?
Rhea has been arrested under sections 8 (c), 27 (a), 28, and 29 of the Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act (NDPS).
Section 8(c) of the NDPS Act states that produce, manufacture, possess, sell, purchase, transport, warehouse, use, consume, import inert-state, import into India, export from India or tranship any narcotic drug or psychotropic substance, except for medical and scientific purposes requires a license or permit by the concerned authorities. It also prohibits the cultivation of the cannabis plant and the production, possession, use, consumption, purchase, sale, transport, warehousing, import inter-state, and export inter-state of ganja for any purpose.
Section 20(b) deals with penalties for anyone who “produces, manufactures, possesses, sells, purchases, transports, imports inter-State, exports inter-State or uses cannabis, shall be punishable.”
Section 27(a) pertains to the consumption of any narcotic drug or psychotropic substance. This particular section prescribes the punishment for a person consuming a narcotic drug or psychotropic substance that includes cocaine, morphine, diacetylmorphine, or any other narcotic drug/psychotropic substance.
Sections 28 and 29 deal with the offenses of attempting to commit offenses, and for abetment and criminal conspiracy.
What’s next in terms of punishment?
Depending on the charges, the punishments may vary widely. For Section 8(c), the convict will be punishable with rigorous imprisonment which shall not be less than ten years which may extend to twenty years. They shall also be liable for a fine which shall not be less than one lakh rupees but may extend to two lakh rupees. The other sections deal with punishments that may vary from 1 to 10 years of prison sentence and may carry a fine of Rs 20,000 to 1-2 lakhs.