Suicide abetment case: Republic TV Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami arrested by Mumbai Police
Arnab Goswami arrest: The Maharashtra Police on Wednesday arrested Republic TV Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami house in connection with the death of interior designer Anvay Naik and his mother Kumud Naik in Alibaug in 2018. Republic TV in its report claimed that Goswami was “assaulted and dragged” during the arrest. Goswami reportedly said that Mumbai Police also physically assaulted his mother-in-law and father-in-law, son and wife.
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.
In a release, RepublicTV said, “Arnab Goswami’s arrest in the related suicide case has been made as part of a larger vindictive exercise against an independent journalist and an independent news organization.” The release said the “Anvay Naik suicide case was investigated and closed by a court of law after a closure report by the police noted that no case was made out in April 2019.”
#IndiaWithArnab | Arnab Goswami’s arrest has been made part of a larger vindictive exercise against an independent journalist & news network. This is to bring to light real facts on unfounded allegations in a closed case based on which #ArnabGoswami was assaulted & arrested pic.twitter.com/Artf59dBhO
— Republic (@republic) November 4, 2020
Naik, a 53-year-old interior designer, and his mother Kumud Naik had died by suicide in May 2018. A suicide note purportedly written by Naik claimed that Goswami and two others owed him Rs 5.4 crore and had refused to pay it back, forcing him to take the extreme step.
The monetary transaction had taken place during the construction of the Republic TV studio. When Naik’s mother learned about Naik’s death, she too killed herself.
The Alibaug police had registered a case of abetment to suicide the same month but the case was reportedly closed by the Raigad police in 2019.
But in May this year, the Maharashtra government ordered a fresh investigation into the case against Goswami and two others by the state Criminal Investigation Department.
Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh in a tweet had said that a fresh probe was ordered after Naik’s daughter Adnya approached him regarding the case. “Adnya Naik had complained to me that Alibaug Police had not investigated non-payment of dues from Arnab Goswami’s Republic, which drove her entrepreneur father and grandmom to suicide in May 2018,” he tweeted. “I’ve ordered a CID re-investigation of the case.”
Republic TV had earlier denied the charges and claimed that “a false and malicious campaign” was being run against it by certain groups with vested interest.
As per a Republic TV report, over a dozen officers of the Mumbai Police reached the residence of Goswami without summons, documents or court papers. He also claimed that he was manhandled by the police and pushed into their van during his arrest. Police allegedly also blocked Republic Media Network’s employees Niranjan Narayanswamy and Sanjay Pathak from entering the journalist’s residence.
The arrest comes a day after the Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh called Arnab Goswami ‘the biggest hawala’ operator in the city of Mumbai.
“The courts of the country are watching this absurdity and the planting of falsehoods despite their observations cautioning the Mumbai Police from such unprofessionalism. The multiple u-turns of the Mumbai Police show that it is floundering as the fake case has collapsed. The Mumbai Police has tried to blackmail and coerce random people into naming Republic. The CBI now has a copy of the tape of their witness coercion. This witch-hunt will end soon because more and more people have seen through Param Bir Singh’s tactics. I am absolutely certain that we will get justice from the courts,” Arnab said in a statement on Tuesday.