Jiah Khan Suicide Case: Sooraj Pancholi Acquitted Due to Lack of Evidence

Jia Khan(left) & Suraj Pancholi (right)

On Friday, a special court of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in Mumbai announced its verdict in the Jiah Khan suicide case, almost 10 years after the actor was found dead in her Mumbai home. Sooraj Pancholi, who was accused of abetting Jiah Khan's suicide, was acquitted of all charges due to a lack of evidence.

Jiah Khan, best known for her role in Nishabd opposite Amitabh Bachchan, was found dead on June 3, 2013. Based on a letter purportedly written by her, in which she spoke of her troubled relationship with Sooraj Pancholi and accused him of physical and mental abuse, Mumbai Police booked him under section 306 (abetment to suicide). Although Sooraj's initial bail plea was rejected, he was granted bail on July 1, 2013, after posting a bond of ₹50,000. The next day, he was acquitted by the court, which ruled that he was not accountable for Jiah Khan's suicide.

Jiah Khan's mother, Rabia Khan, was dissatisfied with the court's verdict and requested a thorough investigation. A year later, the Bombay High Court transferred the case from Mumbai Police to the CBI. In her testimony before the special CBI court, Rabia Khan reiterated her claim that her daughter was murdered by Sooraj Pancholi, and that Jiah was suffering from depression. Aditya Pancholi, Sooraj's father, filed a defamation suit against Rabia Khan for ₹100 crores after the case was transferred to the CBI.

Last year, Rabia filed a new appeal in the Bombay High Court, alleging errors in the previous CBI investigation. However, the appeal was dismissed by the court. Rabia had requested a fresh investigation into the case by an independent and special agency, with the assistance of the United States' Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
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