Mumbai/New Delhi: May 21, 2012
Indian Premier League players Wayne Parnell and Rahul Sharma were among 91 persons released on Monday after medical tests, after they were detained from a rave party busted at a Juhu hotel whose director has been arrested.
Both Parnell of South Africa and Rahul, who play for Pune Warriors, claimed innocence with the Indian leg spinner saying he will quit cricket if his blood test returns positive for drugs. Parnell said it was just a simple case of being at a "wrong place at the wrong time" after another controversy struck IPL last night.
"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 said.
Vishay Handa (31), director of upscale Oakwood Premier Hotel, was arrested under relevant sections of Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, police said.
110 grams of Cocaine and 64 grams of Charas had been recovered from the premises during the raid.
"All those who were detained last night during the rave party, where ear-shattering music was being played, were allowed to go after their blood and urine samples were taken," a police officer involved in the investigation told PTI.
"Among those who were let off include two IPL cricketers -- Wayne Parnell and leg-spinner Rahul Sharma," he said.
"The blood and urine samples were sent to Cooper and JJ hospitals, to examine if those present had consumed drugs," he said, adding the results were expected within a fortnight.
Handa was later produced before a magistrate who sent him in police remand till May 25.
Police told the court that Handa was the key person in organising the rave party, attended by mainly youngsters and foreign nationals. Seeking Handa's remand, police said they want to interrogate him in connection with supplying drugs to the patrons.
Meanwhile, claiming Handa's innocence his counsel B K Ashok said his client was just a manager at the hotel and that drugs were found on the floor of the premises and not from his possession.
Television actors and real life couple Apurva and Shilpa Agnihotri, who attended the Juhu rave, claimed to be innocent and alleged they were targeted for being celebrities.
Shilpa claimed there were journalists, scientists and others. "We had no idea it was a rave party," she claimed.(PTI)