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NCB ‘question bank’ for Sara, Deepika, Shraddha




Three Bollywood divas — Deepika Padukone, Sara Ali Khan and Shraddha Kapoor — are being questioned by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) in a drugs related case linked to the death of actor Sushant Singh Rajput.

The agency after questioning several other accused in the case has prepared a list of questions that it is seeking answers to from the three actors which can spell trouble for them.

According to NCB sources, the three actors have been asked to join the probe after several alleged chats came to light where drugs were being discussed. The source said that Deepika will be first asked to identify the mobile number in the alleged chat with her former manager Karishma Prakash. She will also be asked if she sent those messages or someone on her behalf sent the alleged messages enquiring about “maal” from Karishma.

The sources said that the NCB will also ask Deepika, who is the daughter of badminton icon Prakash Padukone, if she used to consume drugs, if yes, from where she used to procure them and who made the payment for the drugs.

The NCB will also ask her if she was procuring the drugs for her personal consumption or for someone else and since when she has been using these substances and who all were the persons who provided her these drugs. She will also be asked for how long she has known Karishma and Sushant’s former talent manager Jaya Saha, who worked with Kwan Talent Management Agency.

Similarly, Shraddha, who is the daughter of actor Shakti Kapoor, will be asked about her alleged chats with Saha to get the CBD oil. The NCB source said that she will be asked since when she was procuring drugs and for whom and whether she consumed them and who paid for them.

The source said that Shraddha, who starred with Sushant in “Chichhore”, will also be questioned about her visits to the Pawna resort, where the alleged drugs party was hosted, along with Sushant. She will be asked for how long she knew Sushant and did they consume drugs together and who procured the drugs for the parties, and who made the payment for them.

Meanwhile, Sara, daughter of actor Saif Ali Khan, is also being questioned in the case and will be asked if she too consumed drugs. Sara’s troubles began after Sushant’s girlfriend Rhea Chakraborty in a television interview claimed that the late actor got into the habit of smoking marijuana during the shooting of “Kedarnath”.

Sara and Sushant were the lead actors of “Kedarnath”. Sara will also be questioned if she knew of the drug usage by Sushant during the shooting of the film and from where these drugs came and who paid for them.

The NCB has already recorded the statement of Sushant’s former manager Shruti Modi, Bollywood actor Rakul Preet Singh, Dharma Productions former executive producer Kshitij Prasad Ravi, Kwan Talent Management Agency CEO Dhruv Chitgopekar, producer Madhu Mantena Varma and several others.

The NCB has arrested Rhea, her brother Showik, Sushant’s house manager Samuel Miranda, personal staff Dipesh Sawant and 16 drug peddlers in the case.

The NCB registered a case under the NDPS Act after the Enforcement Directorate (ED), probing a money laundering case linked to the death of Sushant on the basis of a Bihar Police FIR, wrote to the NCB. The ED had detected several drug chats from the seized electronic devices of the accused.


Ashutosh Gowariker: You cannot make to order a film that will become global in its theme




Filmmaker Ashutosh Gowariker feels the global attention his Oscar-nominated film “Lagaan” had garnered is something that cannot be made to order.

The feature film, which was only the third official entry from India to make the cut in the Bast Foreign Language Film category at the Academy Awards, completed 20 years of release on June 15. Over the past two decades, the universal appeal of the Aamir Khan-starrer has only grown.

Gowariker feels that no storyteller can craft a story aiming to reach a global platform. It has to be a story told from the heart. “Cinema cannot be made to order,” he tells IANS.

He adds: “It can be made to order only for commercial success. You can construct a script and know that you can put these elements and them some amount of success is guaranteed. That is made to order, but you cannot make to order a film that will become global in its theme. A filmmaker can write stuff, create what he wants to express through that story and then the film can find its feet, become crossover, and become international. It can’t be planned. It really needs to be heartfelt and should come from the core of your soul.”

While it was a moment of great joy for Indian cinema to have a film represent the industry on a global platform as the Oscars, the film did not win the trophy. While Gowariker accepts that the “experience of Oscars was phenomenal”, he also asserts that there was no after-effect of the glory on him.

“The experience of the Oscars was huge. We always think that we have sent our entry from India but we never consider what the other 75 countries are sending. We don’t know the competition, and we need to know the competition in order to send something that competes. Secondly, there are some kind of films that are very popular in the international cinema space and if a film doesn’t fall in that bracket, it won’t even be considered,” he explains.

He adds: “So, for a ‘Lagaan’ to go, it had that extra special thing in it. It was a sports drama, it was a period piece, it was a cross-culture film, underdogs achieving something. There were so many things that were really global. It was about cricket but nobody focused on that. They all looked at the thematic value.”

The film stars Aamir as a young man in a village of pre-Independence India who accepts a challenge of a ruthless the British officer to a game of cricket with a trained bunch of White officers. The wager is if the officers win, the villagers have to pay three times the tax, while if the villagers win the match they wouldn’t have to pay anything.

Gowariker says he knew at the scripting stage that the film was special, but never anticipated such a mammoth response in the theatres.

“I had no fear in terms of box office because I wasn’t thinking of that. When we finished scripting, I had this feeling that it was something different and if we get the right producer, it could become something exciting for audience. We already had Aamir as the lead. During the process, we had that excitement but we didn’t know then how big it would become,” he says.

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Zareen Khan: I was told to put on weight for ‘Veer’



Zareen Khan: Couldn’t think of being in Bollywood without Salman Khan.

Actress Zareen Khan, who faced bodyshaming after the release of her debut film, the Salman Khan-starrer “Veer” in 2010, claims she was actually told to put on weight for the role by “experienced people” who gave her “instructions”.

Talking about whether the industry judges an actor on the basis of look, Zareen told IANS: “It definitely does. I wouldn’t say all of it, but a major section of the industry does. In the beginning it was really difficult because of the comparison, my weight was almost a national issue.”

When Zareen made her Bollywood debut opposite Salman in “Veer”, people were quick to notice that she had a passing likeness with Katrina Kaif. Soon, the focus shifted to her body type.

“Everybody was just talking about my weight and I couldn’t understand — why is my weight such an issue, because I was told to put on that weight,” she claimed.

“When I entered the industry, I was like this lost child. I was a 20 or 21-year-old, not as polished as the 20 or 21-year-olds we have now. (I had) Nothing to do with the Bollywood industry and there I was on a film set with the biggest superstar of the country,” Zareen recalled about starring with Salman.

“When my very first shot happened I didn’t even know where the camera was. I was that dumb and naive. When I am so inexperienced and I am working with such experienced people, they give you instructions. I was supposed to look like that and I followed instructions, and then when the film released it backfired on me. From my looks, to my weight to everything, I couldn’t understand what I did. It was funny, it was disturbing. There were too many emotions at one time,” Zareen added.

“It went wrong for some time that I didn’t even have work but this industry has taught me that nothing is permanent here. Perceptions change with every film and nothing should be taken to heart,” she summed up.

Zareen was last seen in “Hum Bhi Akele Tum Bhi Akele”, which released on Zee5 a while back.

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Mika Singh accuses KRK of fraud and claims he is banned in India




Singer Mika Singh has made the sensational claim that self-proclaimed critic Kamaal R. Khan is banned in India, and cites property fraud as the reason.

Mika and KRK have been involved in a mudslinging match ever since Salman Khan filed a case against the latter, an actor-turned-critic, over certain remarks he made. Soon, Mika jumped into the ring, claiming to take up the cudgels on behalf of Salman as well as others in the industry on whom KRK had trained his guns. He released a diss track titled “#KRKKutta”.

And now, Mika claims KRK is banned in India due to property fraud. “KRK is banned in India. He cannot enter India. If this is not true, then KRK must step outside and claim it false, and make an official announcement as to when he is planning to return to India,” says the singer.

Mika claims: “I know this with security that KRK will not return to India because of two reasons — first, we have filed a case against KRK some year and a half ago. I have FIR copies with me. KRK committed a fraud with us. He sold two properties to my cousin, one of those properties belonged to KRK and the second belonged to his brother. KRK signed the papers on his property, which is fine but he signed the paper of his brother’s property as well. When we filed the FIR, KRK admitted that he forged the signature and ever since he has been absconding.”

“He has been served court notice on countless occasions, but he has been ignoring all of them. KRK cannot return to India now. He is absconding and has been banned in India. KRK was banned in Delhi and Mumbai earlier, now he is banned in entire India. If he returns, he will get arrested,” Mika further claims.

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