CBI asks US help to recover deleted text; how long will SSR have to wait for justice, asks Sree Iyer

A website recently blogged that the CBI has written to the United States under MLAT seeking to recover some of the deleted messages posted by Sushant Singh Rajput on Facebook and Google. What about the other agencies like ED and NCB? How long will SSR have to wait for justice? Is this step a delay so this case too will go the way of Sunanda, asks Sree Iyer.

The twists and turns in the Sushant Singh Rajput (SSR) case would outfox even the most skilled of Bollywood’s storytellers. The death of the 34-year-old actor at the height of his popularity stunned the country. His fans thought it was a suicide brought on by immense inner mental torment, an affliction he hid from the world.

As per the reports, on June 14, 2020, at around 8 AM, he asked his domestic help Neeraj for a glass of cold water. For breakfast, he asked his cook Keshav to give him coconut water, juice, and bananas. He didn’t have the bananas. When Keshav went to ask him around 10 am what he wanted for lunch, he found the room locked. Assuming that Sushant wanted to sleep till late, everyone let him be. But when the actor did not open the door or answer the calls of Siddharth Pithani, his creative content manager and flatmate since January 2020, the staff grew concerned enough to hunt for a key and alert Sushant’s sister Meetu, who lives in a Mumbai suburb Goregaon, 16 km away. They decided that the lock had to be broken. Around 1 pm, a local locksmith broke the lock to the door. But rather than go into the room immediately, Pithani paid the locksmith Rs.2,000 and saw him off. He then came back, and went into Sushant’s room, with house manager Dipesh Sawant and Neeraj following him. It was then that they found Sushant hanging from the ceiling fan.

On July 25, 2020, almost six weeks after Sushant’s death, his father K K Singh filed a complaint with the Patna police, stating that he suspected foul play. Since then, the case has taken several dramatic turns in the last one year. So much so that even a fictional murder mystery would pale in front of it.

The spotlight shifted to Sushant’s girlfriend Rhea Chakraborty and her family, whom Sushant’s father Krishna Kishore Singh accused of siphoning off Rs.15 crore from his account and having abetted his suicide[1][2]. In between, a convoluted potboiler began to simmer, one involving the death of Disha Salian, Sushant’s manager briefly, a few actors, and a political battle between two states and their police machinery.

According to the reports, Disha was partying with her friends and fiancé on June 9 and had consumed ‘a considerable amount of alcohol’. She complained that ‘no one cares for anyone anymore’ and locked herself in a room. Hearing the sound of a running tap, her friends assumed she was throwing up. But after a while, they knocked on the door. When she didn’t answer, they broke it down and saw that she’d fallen off the balcony. By the time they reached downstairs, the watchman had already called the police[3]. The friend said that Disha was alive when they found her but was declared dead at the hospital.

Eighteen months after SSR’s death, the investigative agencies, in particular, CBI has still not cracked open the case. After the initial buzz about the involvement of the who’s who of Bollywood and their clique that keeps out newcomers and their drug habits, this case had slowly start fading from people’s memory until… a relatively lesser-known website Menafn.com reported that the CBI has approached the United States to provide them with information on some deleted messages that SSR may have posted on Social Media networks like FACEBOOK and Google[5].

Under the India’s Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) with the US, from Google and Facebook (both entities have their headquarters in America). The MLATs are signed between two or more nations to exchange information that might aid in solving cases[5]. If by analyzing chats, officers can solve SSR’s case, one of the most high-profile cases in recent times will get a closure.

Dealing with different aspects of Rajput’s death, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) also started conducting investigations. As part of it, NCB had arrested the actor’s girlfriend/ actress Rhea Chakraborty last year[6]. During the investigation, her bank accounts were frozen. A special court has recently accepted Chakraborty’s plea to allow her to use her accounts again[5].

Some unanswered questions in his mysterious death case are:

  1. There’s been no serious talk about SSR and his mental health.
  2. Was the nepotism angle sensationalized?
  3. What are the ED’s findings?
  4. SSR’s death and drugs, what’s the connection?
  5. What happened to the CBI investigation?

What about the death of his Manager?

As for Disha Salian’s case, it stands ‘closed’. An accidental death report was filed after Disha Salian’s body was found. Police have filed a final report as they claim there was no foul play. Since there was no FIR registered after her death, the police have closed this case and don’t have to report to a court.[7]

The case of Sushant Singh Rajput’s death had put the Shiv Sena in trouble. The way the Shiv Sena reacted to the decision of the Supreme Court, many questions are arising from it that if everyone is happy with the CBI investigation, then what was the problem of the ruling party of Maharashtra?[8]

Many stories about Sushant’s death came on social media and the most talked about is the deep connection between the suicide of his former manager Disha Salian, son of Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, and state minister Aditya Thackeray.

Parth Pawar, the grandson of NCP Chief Sharad Pawar and son of Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, was seen standing with the opposition in the matter. First, he demanded a CBI inquiry, then when the Supreme Court verdict came, he wrote and tweeted ‘Satyamev Jayate’[9]. BJP leader Narayan Rane and his son Nitesh Rane have accused Aditya Thackeray of pressurizing the Mumbai Police in this case.


Justice delayed is justice denied. The killers and their masters roam free, brazen, and stronger than ever. Will Sushant ever get justice? Only time will tell.


[1] Sushant Singh Rajput’s father files complaint against Rhea Chakraborty in PatnaJul 28, 2020, India Today

[2] Rs 15 crore was taken out of Sushant Singh Rajput’s bank accountAug 14, 2020, Mumbai Mirror

[3] What happened on the night Disha Salian died? Her close friend revealsAug 05, 2020, India Today

[4] India – #SSRDeathCase: CBI approaches US Rhea allowed to use frozen accountsNov 10, 2021, Menafn

[5] The Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty And Its Impact On India-US Legal RelationsJun 19, 2020, Mondaq

[6] Rhea Chakraborty arrested by NCB in drug case linked to Sushant Singh Rajput deathSep 8, 2020, Deccan Chronicle

[7] ‘No evidence of foul play’, Mumbai police close probe in Disha Salian death caseAug 27, 2021, Indian Express

[8] Shiv Sena’s reaction on Supreme Court verdict in Sushant Singh Rajput Case, Sanjay Raut saidAug 19, 2020, News Trace

[9] Sushant Singh case: Satyamev Jayate, says Sharad Pawar’s grandson Parth Pawar after SC orderAug 19, 2020, India Today

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