The Juhu police Monday evening arrested Sooraj Pancholi, son of actors Aditya Pancholi and Zarina Wahab, for allegedly abetting the suicide of actor Jiah Khan. The arrest came after her mother, Rabiya Amin, submitted a six-page letter, purportedly written by Jiah, detailing the “difficult relationship” between Jiah and Sooraj.
Rabiya said the family found the letter in Jiah’s wallet in her room two days after she died. The letter states that Jiah was beaten up and forced to abort.
“The arrest is based on Rabiya’s complaint and her statement,” said Cherring Dorje, DCP (Zone 9). He added that the letter would be treated as evidence, though there was no mention of the name ‘Sooraj’ anywhere in the letter.
The police initially detained Sooraj for over 90 minutes and questioned him over the contents of the letter. “He has admitted to the abortion and confessed that he hurt her physically. We arrested him after questioning,” said an officer.
Sooraj said he had been avoiding Jiah for over two months, but could not after a point as she was very emotional, an officer said.
Rabiya on Monday told the police that Sooraj had physically and mentally tortured Jiah. She said Aditya Pancholi was against the affair, as Jiah was older than Sooraj.
“When Jiah came to London for her birthday a few months ago, she had bruises on her face. I asked her about it and she told me she was in love with Sooraj. I called her sisters to the room and she broke down,” said Rabiya. “She once told me: ‘He abuses me, hits me, doesn’t respect me and embarrasses me in front of his friends’. I asked her to walk out of the abusive relationship and stop talking to him,” she added.
Rabiya rubbished reports that Jiah was depressed. “She had no work-related problems and was happy. She had asked me to attend a film festival with her when she came to London. She had signed an English film recently,” Rabiya said.
Meanwhile, the police are awaiting the handwriting analysis report of the letter to ascertain whether its author was Jiah. “We will present Sooraj before court on Tuesday,” said Arun Bhagat, senior inspector.