Kiran Gosavi, the Narcotics Control Bureau’s “independent witness” in the cruise ship drugs case who has been untraced for weeks, surfaced today, saying he wants to surrender to the Uttar Pradesh police as he felt “threatened” in Maharashtra.
But the expected drama ended in anti-climax, with the police flatly refusing to accept his surrender. An audio clip circulated by sources close to Mr Gosavi, indicated the policemen at a local station in Lucknow unceremoniously turned him down.
The clip was of a phone call where a man, purportedly Mr Gosavi, is heard asking if it was the Madiyaon police chowki. After confirming, he said “I want to come there. I am Kiran Gosavi. I want to surrender here”.
“Why have you come here?” the policeman responded.
“This is the nearest police station for me at the moment,” Mr Gosavi said.
Once the policeman confirmed that he indeed wanted to surrender, he said, “No, you can’t surrender here. Try somewhere else”.
Earlier, the Lucknow police commissioner told NDTV that Mr Gosavi cannot surrender in the Uttar Pradesh capital, “because the Lucknow police station does not have the jurisdiction to take any action against him”.
NDTV has not been able to verify the authenticity of the clip. But its wide circulation on social media saw the Madiyaon police make big preparations to ward off another possible effort at surrender by the man who is wanted in Maharashtra.
A number of officers were seen waiting outside the building. The media had turned out in force too.
In a telephonic conversation with NDTV earlier this evening, Mr Gosavi had said that he wished to surrender in Lucknow as he felt “threatened” in Mumbai.
A private investigator, Mr Gosavi was present during the cruise ship raid and later at the NCB office with Aryan Khan. His selfie and videos with Aryan Khan at both places indicated that he had unlimited access to the son of Shah Rukh Khan.
It fuelled questions from Maharashtra’s ruling alliance about the anti-drugs agency’s investigation. Several leaders questioned why an “independent witness” of the agency should be present at the raid and its office and take selfies with the high-profile accused. Yesterday, a man claiming to be Mr Gosavi’s personal bodyguard made allegations of bribery against him.
Prabhakar Sail — who is another witnesses in the case — said he heard Gosavi having a telephonic conversation about payoffs with one Sam D’Souza. Mr Sail claimed he heard Mr Gosavi say they should ask for a “bomb Rs 25 crore” and then settle at Rs 18 crore, of which Rs 8 crore is for the NCB’s zonal officer in charge of the investigation, Sameer Wankhede.
Mr Gosavi told NDTV that he has no knowledge about this. “I’m hearing this for the first time,” he said, adding that he had not met Mr Wankhede before October 2.