KOCHI: The Malayalam film industry has once again come under a cloud following reports that Mohamed Anoop, mastermind of a Bengaluru drug racket arrested by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) last week, has close links with a few members of the film fraternity believed to be involved in the drug supply chain. The Excise department had conducted a preliminary inquiry to find out whether anyone from the movie industry is indeed involved in the case.
A source said since 2013, Anoop has been dabbling in drugs in Bengaluru. He used to collect MDMA drugs from foreign nationals and supply them at rave parties in Bengaluru and Kochi. “Anoop hailing from Vennala here has links with the local drug dealers. He has close ties with a few DJs, models and actors from the Malayalam film industry,” said an official.
Ashok Kumar, assistant commissioner, Excise department, here, said, “ We have conducted an investigation into Mohammed Anoop’s local connections. However, we are not initiating a separate inquiry as the NCB is currently investigating the case.” Mollywood’s drug links had been exposed after actor Shine Tom Chacko was arrested during a rave party in Kochi in 2015.
Meanwhile, a youth from Vaikom in Kottayam has alleged that a woman from Palakkad is ferrying drugs for Anoop in Kochi. “I have known her in the past and she has ties with the film industry. The drug supply is carried out under the cover of online food delivery,” said Arun Kumar, who worked in Kochi with an online food delivery firm.
“The gang had attacked me on May 13 last year threatening me not to lodge a police complaint. Three persons, including the woman, were arrested by Kadavantra police. However, they continued to harbour a grudge against me and I was again targeted by the gang on March 13 this year. I can provide details about the gang,” he added. The Narcotics Control Bureau had busted the Bengaluru drug racket last month. TV actor Anika, a member of the gang, was the first to be arrested with huge quantities of MDMA and other synthetic drugs.
Number of NDPS cases: 57
Number of persons arrested: 85
Ganja seized:23.970 kg
(Seizure during the raids carried out by Excise during the months of April, May, June and July)
In order to curb the inflow of drugs, the department will continue the special drive, said Ashok Kumar, Assistant Commissioner, Excise Department, Ernakulam.