The Thane police, probing the Rs 2,000-crore drug bust, are throwing their dragnet wide within Bollywood. After naming former actress Mamta Kulkarni as one of the prime accused in the racket, they are now training their guns on another popular yesteryear actor-turned-comedian.

Also read: Thane Ephedrine Case: Involvement of three Bollywood actors suspected

Former Bollywood actress Mamta Kulkarni
Former Bollywood actress Mamta Kulkarni

Sources say the police have found that the comedian and a silver screen actor attended a meeting at a five-star hotel in Juhu a few months ago to discuss the supply of deadly party drug mephodrone — commonly known by its street name, meow meow — within Bollywood.

Also read: Thane drugs haul case: Cops add Mamta Kulkarni's WhatsApp chats to second chargesheet

The police have sought from the hotel its CCTV footages of the past few months, but the owners are allegedly not cooperating. "The hotel owners claim that they don't keep video records for over a month. We have clues and witnesses who can corroborate that the two actors had attended the meeting," said a senior officer from the Thane police.

Supply chain
The meeting was allegedly attended by Jay Mukhi and Kishore Singh Rathod, ringleaders of the Thane racket, and a few other drug peddlers. Besides, two sons of a notorious drug peddler were present, said the officer. "The Bollywood actor's name was revealed by Jay Mukhi (who is in police custody)."

He said the peddlers discussed setting up a mephedrone supply chain across Mumbai and for Bollywood parties. The drug allegedly is in huge demand in the Hindi film industry and party circles.

Leaving nothing to chance, the police are building a watertight case against the comedian and the actor before calling them for questioning. "Once we get proper evidence, we will call them," said the officer.

The Bollywood actor's ties with international drug lord and Kulkarni's husband, Vicky Goswami, reportedly date back to a 1997 narcotics case. A TV soap actor and a small-time Bollywood actor are also under the police's lens.

Also read: Mamta Kulkarni was to be Thane drug racket's front: Cops

Rathod's kin questioned
The Thane police began questioning family of absconding ringleader Rathod, including his father and former BJP MLA, Bhavsinh Rathod, mother, wife and sister yesterday. They have summoned over 15 family members and friends of Rathod and Goswami from Gujarat. Both Goswami and Rathod hail from Gujarat.

"We have asked friends who were in touch with Rathod in the past or who were close to him to visit us. The family arrived on Thursday. We found that Bhavsingh had been in touch with Rathod over the phone. Bhavsinh has a tainted past," said the officer. Bhavsinh, a reformed dacoit, had been arrested in 1997 for smuggling 1,000 kg of hashish.