Republic TV Editor Arnav Goswami Arrested; Prakash Javadekar ‘condemn the attack on press freedom’,

Mumbai: Arnab Goswami Republic TV Editor-in-Chief was arrested by Maharashtra Police on Wednesday morning. He has been captured for purportedly abetting with the death of interior designer Anvay Naik and his mother Kumud Naik in 2018.

A senior police official has confirmed that Goswami has been arrested. This comes at a time when TRP scam investigation against Goswami is going on in Mumbai.

Goswami, after being assaulted by the Mumbai Police, as alleged by the Republic TV, has been detained under section 306 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), which pertains to abetment to suicide. The channel has also accused the police of assaulting his family, including his son.

Several Union Ministers are among those who have condemned the arrest

Amit Shah said “it is Blatant misuse of state power against Republic TV & Arnab Goswami is an attack on individual freedom and the 4th pillar of democracy.”

nformation and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar calling it a reminder of the Emergency.

“We condemn the attack on press freedom in Maharashtra. This is not the way to treat the Press. This reminds us of the emergency days when the press was treated like this,” Prakash Javadekar tweeted as reports emerged of Arnab Goswami’s arrest.

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2018 abetment to suicide case

 In May 2018, almost a year after Republic TV was launched, a 53-year-old interior designer, Anvay Naik, and his mother, committed suicide. In his suicide note, Naik alleged he was being forced to take this step as he was not paid dues collectively amounting to Rs 5.40 crore by Goswami and two others.

In May, Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh had announced that the suicide was being reinvestigated after a fresh complaint by Adnya Naik, his daughter. Mr Deshmukh had claimed that Adnya believed the Alibaug police had not investigated Republic’s role in the non-payment of dues, which, she claimed, drove her father and grandmother to suicide in May 2018.

The arrest comes in the middle of Mr Goswami’s row with the Mumbai Police over its investigations into a ratings scam and allegations that Republic TV is among three channels involved in manipulating TRPs or Television Rating Points by bribing households metred for viewership. The editor had accused the police of harassing his colleagues and pursuing a vendetta over his channel’s criticism of Mumbai Police’s handling of the Sushant Singh Rajput case.

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