Rave party: Cricketers, celebs claim innocence, organiser arrested
Almost 100 people, including the two IPL cricketers, were detained till late Sunday night after the raid while Vishesh Handa, director of the Oakwood Hotel in Juhu, was arrested early Monday under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act, police said.
"Handa, organiser of the rave party and director of Oakwood Premier Hotel, was arrested under NDPS Act. Charas and cocaine were found at the venue and hence he has been booked under the act. He has been remanded to police custody till May 25," said a police officer.
Two cricketers from the Pune Warriors team - Rahul Sharma and Wayne Parnell - were among the 96 people (58 men and 38 women) detained late Sunday. Drugs like Ecstasy and charas and 110 grams of cocaine were also seized from the spot. Even though no arrests have been made yet, police have released the cricketers and other detainees after recording their statements and taking their blood and urine samples.
A senior police official from Juhu Police Station, however, said that the blood and urine samples have been collected from three Mumbai hospitals and have been sent for forensic testing. The results, to come after a day or two, will give police a clearer picture, the official said.
Meanwhile, the Pune Warriors players claimed Monday that they don't use drugs and they were at the wrong place at the wrong time at the time of the raid.
"I don't do drugs. Myself and Rahul were there at the hotel in a party at the request of a friend. We went there and at 7'o'clock. Police were all over in the party. We were just at the wrong place at the wrong time," said Parnell in Mumbai.
Addressing the media in Jalandhar, Sharma said:"I was invited to a birthday party. Wayne Parnell was with me, I did not know that there was a rave party at the hotel." Sharma maintained that he is clean and also said that he would give up cricket if he tests positive. Parnell said he and Sharma had given their blood and urine samples for testing and that he was confident they would come out clean.
Also present at the spot, TV actors Shilpa Saklani and Apurva Agnihotri claimed innocence, insisting they weren't aware it was a rave party. "We were hardly there for 25 minutes and were sitting outside. There were journalists and scientists as well. We saw cops had come to the hotel and we were sent for medical examination," she added.
The actress, who was seen as Ganga in "Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi", says they hardly ever party. The couple was taken to a government hospital to take their blood sample, but she was upset with the way the procedure took place.
"The cops were very supportive but what hurt me the most was that the hospital staff was not supportive at all. My blood sample were taken but wasn't labelled for almost 45 minutes. However, Shilpa said she is is sure that they will come out clean.