Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan’s son Aryan Khan returned home on Saturday from Mumbai’s Arthur Road Jail after spending 22 days there following his arrest in a Narcotics Control Bureau raid on a cruise ship off the city coast.
Aryan Khan had an emotional reunion with his parents Shah Rukh Khan and Gauri Khan at their home Mannat, a landmark in surburban Bandra.
The 23-year-old Aryan Khan walked out of the prison at 11 am, got into a car and reached Mannat half an hour later, as fans waited outside the landmark bungalow to catch a glimpse.
It was the homecoming of their "prince" Aryan Khan and fans of Shah Rukh Khan made sure to make it special as they thronged in larger numbers outside the actor's bungalow, celebrating with music, dance and firecrackers.
As Shah Rukh's convoy arrived at Mannat, hundreds of fans of the actor gathered to catch a glimpse of the Khan family. The supporters ran alongside the car, shouting, "We love Shah Rukh, we love Aryan" and started dancing to the beats of drums.
Police barricaded the area outside Mannat to control the crowd and the media contingent present.
"Welcome home Aryan Khan. Stay strong prince Aryan. Everything will be alright soon," read a banner by a group of fans who arrived outside Mannat early in the morning.
"Today we are standing outside Mannat and we finally feel like jannat (heaven). It was a tough time. But Shah Rukh and the family have sailed through it," a fan said.
Fans across all ages, children, college students and even elderly couples, showed up to celebrate Aryan's return to his home. The lane to Mannat's entrance was jam-packed with crowds. Police and Shah Rukh's private security had to clear the area for the car to move smoothly.
Even after Aryan’s convoy went inside the bungalow, many fans waited in the hope that Shah Rukh might wave to the eager supporters, as he does annually on his birthday.
On Friday evening, Mannat was decked up with lights, signaling the celebrations for his release, Shah Rukh's birthday on November 2, Diwali on November 4 and then Aryan's birthday on November 13.
Earlier in the morning, half an hour before Aryan came out of the prison, his father’s bodyguard got down from a white Range Rover car near the jail gate. Around 11 am, the car started moving slowly near the prison's gate and stopped to receive Aryan.
The Range Rover was part of the convoy which left Mannat shortly after 8 am and reached a spot in near the prison around 9 am, where it halted to avoid a traffic jam in the area, an official said.
A large crowd of Shah Rukh Khan’s fans had gathered outside the prison since early morning. A sizeable media contingent was also present to cover Aryan’s release from the jail.
Outside the prison, fans and onlookers cheering for Shah Rukh Khan and Aryan and trying to catch a glimpse of the superstar were in for a disappointment as they could not see the actor’s face and had to assume that he was in the vehicle.
Aryan came out of the prison a day after a special court issued his release memo.
He was granted bail by the Bombay High Court on Thursday. Shah Rukh Khan's actor-friend Juhi Chawla stood as surety for the 23-year-old before the special court, designated to hear cases related to the Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act (NDPS).
The HC on Friday afternoon made available its operative order in which it imposed 14 bail conditions on Aryan Khan and his co-accused in the case, Arbaaz Merchant and Munmun Dhamecha, who were also granted bail, stipulating their release on a personal bond of Rs 1 lakh each with one or two sureties of the same amount.
The relief to the trio came just a day before the HC was scheduled to take a two-week break for Diwali.
In the five-page order, the high court said the trio will have to surrender their passports before the NDPS court and shall not leave India without taking permission from the special court and will have to attend the NCB office each Friday between 11 am and 2 pm to mark their presence.
The judge will give a detailed bail order with reasons next week.
Aryan Khan, Merchant and Dhamecha were arrested by the NCB on October 3 and booked under relevant sections of the NDPS Act for possession, consumption, sale/purchase of banned drugs and conspiracy and abetment.
Meanwhile, a special court in Mumbai on Saturday granted bail to alleged drug peddler Aachit Kumar and eight others who were arrested by the NCB following the raid on the cruise ship. Of the 20 persons arrested by the NCB after the raid, as many as 14 have got bail so far.
(With PTI inputs)