Republic TV’s Arnab Goswami has been arrested in a two-year-old suicide abetment case, the Mumbai police said today. Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said it “reminds us of the Emergency” as he condemned the move.
“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.
The Republic Editor-in-Chief has been arrested for allegedly abetting the suicide of a 53-year-old interior designer, Press Trust of India quoted a police officer as saying.
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.@PIB_India@DDNewslive@republic
— Prakash Javadekar (@PrakashJavdekar) November 4, 2020
The officer said a police team picked up Mr Goswami from his home in Mumbai. The Editor claimed he was manhandled by the police and pushed into their van.
The case involves the 2018 suicide of an architect and his mother over alleged non-payment of dues by Republic TV, PTI quoted the official as saying.
The arrest comes in the middle of Mr Goswami’s row with the Mumbai Police over its investigation into a ratings scam and allegations that Republic TV is among three channels involved in manipulating TRPs or Television Rating Points by bribing households with metres.
The editor accused the police of harassing his journalists with summons.
In May, Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh had announced that a re-investigation has been ordered on a fresh complaint by Adnya Naik, daughter of the architect Anvay Naik.
Mr Deshmukh had said Adnya alleged that the Alibaug police had not investigated the alleged non-payment of dues from Republic, which she claimed drove her father and grandmother to suicide in May 2018.
(With inputs from PTI)