Script gone sour
THE WEEK|August 23, 2020
Script gone sour
Political controversies muddy investigations into the actor’s death
DNYANESH JATHAR

THE MYSTERY surrounding the alleged suicide of actor Sushant Singh Rajput is getting deeper by the day. Three investigating agencies—the Mumbai Police, the Bihar Police and the Enforcement Directorate—are examining whether there was any foul play, while the Central Bureau of Investigation is all set to take over the probe.

Sushant was found dead at his Bandra residence on June 14. It was reported as a suicide as he was found hanging in his room. The initial controversy surrounding the death was about nepotism and bitter rivalries within the Hindi film industry. There were reports about how certain influential names exerted control over the careers of newcomers, especially those without any industry background. The Mumbai Police recorded statements of filmmakers like Aditya Chopra of Yash Raj Films, director Mahesh Bhat and Apoorva Mehta, who is the CEO of Karan Johar’s Dharma Productions.

Sushant’s girlfriend Rhea Chakraborty subsequently approached Union Home Minister Amit Shah for a CBI probe into the actor’s death. The tragedy turned into a political controversy after Sushant’s father, K.K. Singh, expressed his unhappiness over the investigation carried out by the Mumbai Police and registered a zero first information report (an FIR that can be filed at any police station irrespective of the place of crime and area of jurisdiction) in Patna on July 25, accusing Rhea and her family of mentally and financially harassing Sushant and driving him to suicide.

With Bihar heading for assembly elections, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Modi accused the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi government in Maharashtra of not investigating the case thoroughly. “Uddhav Thackeray is under pressure from the Congress-funded Bollywood mafia and is bent on saving all the elements responsible in the case,” tweeted Sushil Modi.

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August 23, 2020

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