Actor Nandu Appears Before SIT In Tollywood Drugs Case:- As part of an ongoing investigation in the high-end online drug racket, Tollywood film actor Ananda Krishna alias Nandu appeared before the special investigation team (SIT) of Telangana’s excise department on Tuesday.
Nandu is among the 12 persons, including actors and directors, from the Telugu film industry, to be summoned by the SIT in connection with the racket busted on July 2. Since the past fortnight, all the 12 persons connected to the film industry, who were served notices under relevant sections of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act, have appeared before the SIT. Moreover, notices were issued by the excise department to several pubs and bars in connection with the probe.
The SIT questioned several others as well, apart from the Tollywood personalities.
Earlier, Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao directed the police and the excise officials to step up the investigation into the case without the fear of any political interference. He had asked the officials to spare none, even if the person was a politician or a cabinet minister. After the notices were issued to Tollywood personalities, state excise Minister T Padma Rao Goud said “the investigation in the case was transparent and that the film industry was not being targeted.”
“The government is taking all measures to make Hyderabad a drug-free city,” the minister had said. The names of some members of Tollywood had cropped up, during the investigation.
The Excise officials earlier said, the SIT is questioning them to find out if they had any links with the racket as consumers or suppliers, or with those arrested.
Yesterday, Telugu actor Tanish Alladi was questioned by the SIT sleuths for four hours. The SIT since July 19, has questioned filmmaker Puri Jagannadh, cinematographer Shyam K Naidu, actors P Subba Raju, Tarun Kumar, P Navdeep, Ravi Teja and Tanish Alladi, actresses Charmi Kaur and Mumaith Khan, art director Dharma Rao alias Chinna, and Srinivasa Rao, who had earlier worked as Teja’s driver.
According to a SIT official, the proceedings have been videographed and some among those questioned have given their consent for taking the samples of their body fluids, hair and nails, while others refused. Those questioned so far have cooperated with the investigators, and some of them gave “certain clues” in connection with the racket, the official said. So far, 20 people have been arrested, including a US citizen, a Dutch national, and seven B Tech degree holders employed with multinational companies in Hyderabad.
Under the racket, high-end drugs such as lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) and methylenedioxy-methamphetamine (MDMA) were being supplied. Investigators suspect that the gang’s clientele had nearly 1,000 customers, including students of city-based schools and colleges, people associated with Tollywood, senior officials of MNCs and employees of IT firms in Cyberabad.
Several orders were placed by the racketeers through ‘Darknet’ and the drugs were delivered by couriers including from overseas, the officials had said. Darknet’ is said to be a restricted online network frequently used in illegal activities
Nandu has acted in films like “100% Love”, “Paatasala”, “365 Days”, “Superstar Kidnap” and “Best Actors”.