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As Sameer Wankhede Faces Probe Amid ‘Extortion’ Allegations, All You Need To Know About The NCB Official

Wankhede had led the NCB team that busted an alleged drugs party on the Cordelia Cruise ship on its way to Goa on October 2.

NCB Mumbai zonal director Sameer Wankhede reached Delhi on Monday amid allegation of payoff in drugs case. (Source: PTI/File)

New Delhi: This Sunday brought a major twist in the Aryan Khan Drugs case when an ‘independent’ witness, Prabhakar Sail, on Sunday claimed that Rs 25 crore was demanded by an official of the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) and other persons, including absconding witness K P Gosavi, to let off Aryan Khan, the son of Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan, who was arrested in the case on Oct 3.

The allegations were raised against NCB Officer Sameer Wankhede, a well-known name in the anti-narcotics enforcement agency as well as within the Bollywood circuits.

ALSO READ: Mumbai Cruise Drugs Case: NCB Orders Vigilance Inquiry Into ‘Extortion’ Affidavit Involving Sameer Wankhede

Wankhede, who led the NCB team that busted an alleged drugs party on the Cordelia Cruise ship on its way to Goa on October 2, will reach Delhi NCB headquarters for a review meeting on Tuesday.

So far Sameer Wankhede has strongly condemned the allegations of extortion brought against him by Sail and NCP leader Nawab Malik. The NCP leader had said that when all the Bollywood personalities were in the Maldives during the pandemic, Sameer Wankhede was also vacationing there.

Screengrab of witness Prabhakar Sail, the bodyguard of KP Gosavi.

Here is a brief record of Sameer Wankhede and his career graph:

2008: Wankhede joined Indian Revenue Service, as a customs officer at the Mumbai airport. 

2010: He became Deputy commissioner with Maharashtra Service Tax department – and fined as many as 2,500 people, including 200 celebrities, for evading tax. He also added revenue of Rs 87 crore in two years to the exchequer, another record in Mumbai. 

2011: He stopped Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport for carrying over 20 bags and fined him Rs 1.5 lakh. He was involved in the case where the Cricket World Cup trophy was released at the Mumbai airport only after Customs duty was paid. The trophy was made of gold.

2013: Wankhede also caught singer Mika Singh at the Mumbai airport with foreign currency. The department served notices on 132 Mumbai-based film production houses for recovery of service tax, besides shooting off letters to 36 actors who hadn’t paid their taxes on time. The service tax department detected alleged tax evasion by actor Vivek Oberoi to the tune of Rs 40 lakh and issued summons to him.

ALSO READ: Aryan Khan Case: The NCB Needs To Prove Its Innocence 

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2014:  Wankhede joined the NIA. 

2016: He received the ‘Excellence in Service’ medal from the DG of NIA- for handling several high-profile terrorism cases, including the case related to Kalyan boys joining terror group ISIS.  

2017 to 2020: Joint Director at the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) –  Cracked some biggest gold-smuggling cases, in one of them  180 kilograms of gold was smuggled to Mumbai. 

Aug 2020: Wankhede came back to NCB, an was involved in probing Sushant Singh Rajput Drug Case.

2021: He was awarded the ‘Home Minister’s Medal’ for excellence in work.

2021: Sameer Wankhede’s tenure at NCB was extended by six more months right after the cruise ship drug-bust case.

READ ALSO: Mumbai Cruise Drugs Case: NCB Orders Vigilance Inquiry Into ‘Extortion’ Affidavit Involving Sameer Wankhede

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Nawab Malik addresses a press conference on Drugs-on-cruise case, at party office, in Mumbai on Oct 14. (Image: ANI)
Connection between Wankhede, Gosavi and Nawab Malik

According to NCB, KP Gosavi is one of the nine independent witnesses in the cruise ship raid case that took place on Oct 2, 2021 in Mumbai. It must be noted, Gosavi was booked for allegedly duping a Pune-based man on the pretext of offering a job in Malaysia. 

Oct 18, 2015: Pune Police arrested absconding accused Kiran Gosavi’s assistant Sherbano Qureshi in connection with a 2018 job fraud case. 

Maharashtra Police had issued a lookout notice against Gosavi in connection with the case. 

Sameer Wankhede VS Nawab Malik  

Nawab Malik’s son-in-law Sameer Khan was arrested on January 13 this year by NCB in connection with a drug case. Later, Khan was granted bail on September 27, 2021 after spending eight months in prison. To this, NCB added that it ‘will move for bail cancellation Sameer Khan in Bombay HC for violating bail conditions’.

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Major drug busts 

In 2020, Wankhede was appointed as Zonal Director of the Narcotics Control Bureau. Since then, he has helmed the team that has managed to bust drug rings and other illegal substances worth Rs 17000 Crore.

NCB Chief Sameer Wankhede this year arrested drug peddler Arif Bhujwala.
A brief timeline:

10 Aug, 2020:  A whopping 191 kilograms of Heroin worth Rs 1000 Crore was seized by DRI at Nhava Sheva Navi Mumbai.

27 Dec, 2020: Mumbai Police busted a Drug ‘home Delivery’ service, in this the Delivery App Executive was arrested among peddlers.

26 Jan, 2021: In Mumbai, NCB nabbed an absconding drug dealer Arif Bhujwala, The Narcotics Control Bureau arrested purported drug dealer Arif Bhujwala from Raigad in connection with the south Mumbai-based drug racket busted in which five people were arrested. 

28 March, 2021: In Mumbai, NCB arrested two major drug peddlers and drugs worth Rs 2.10 crore seized from their residence. 

Other Big Cases

Sushant Singh Rajput Case: Sameer Wankhede was appointed as a senior officer to investigate Sushant Singh’s suicide case. He even investigated other related celebs including Riya Chakraborty, Deepika Padukone, Sara Ali Khan, Rakul Preet Singh, and many other celebrities. 

Bharti Singh Case: He was also in charge of the case when NCB seized drugs from the house of comedian Bharti Singh and her husband Harsh Limbachia. 

Attacked by Drug Peddlers: On November 22, 2020, Wankhede and his officers were attacked by a mob of drug peddlers during his anti-drug raid in Mumbai.

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