Bollywood: On Friday, the Special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Court in Mumbai finally came to a conclusion in actor Zia Khan death case. Actor Sooraj Pancholi who was accused of aiding and abetting Zia Khan’s suicide, has been declared non guilty due to lack of evidence. The courts verdict said “Due to paucity of evidence, this court can’t hold you (Sooraj Pancholi) guilty, hence acquitted,”.
Jiah Khan who was a well known actress was found dead at her home in Mumbai on 3 June 2013. Few days later, during the investigation, a letter allegedly written by Jiah was discovered, the letter had information about her troubled relationship with Sooraj and the physical and mental abuse she faced from him. Followed by which Mumbai Police had arrested Sooraj Pancholi under section 306 (abetment to suicide).
Sooraj Pancholi’s bail application was initially rejected by a Mumbai court, but eventually bail was granted on 1 July 2013 after he signed a bail bond of 50,000 rupees. The court acquitted Sooraj Pancholi on July 2, 2013, saying he was not responsible for Jiah Khan’s suicide. However, Jia’s mother, Rabia Khan, was not happy with her verdict and requested a detailed investigation. The Bombay High Court transferred the case from the Mumbai Police to the CBI a year after Gia’s death.
During the trial by the Special CBI Court, Rabia Khan stayed on her claim that her daughter was murdered by Sooraj Pancholi, who was Jiah’s boyfriend at the time. Sooraj’s father, actor Aditya Pancholi, had also filed a Rs 100 crores defamation suit against Rabia Khan.
Rabia filed a new appeal in 2022 with the Bombay High Court to reopen the 2013 case saying that there is fault in the previous CBI investigation. However, the Bombay High Court dismissed the petition, and Rabia’s plea for a new investigation of the case by an independent, special body assisted by the FBI was not granted.