Arnab should respect the law – Nitin Saxena

New Delhi:  Republic TV channel’s  editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami’s arrest has nothing to do with press freedom as is being propagated  by the ruling party political leaders.   It is simply a case of abetment to suicide, as the police described it before arresting him under  section 306 of Indian Penal Code (IPC)on Wednesday morning from his residence in Mumbai.

Though Arnab resisted his arrest and did not open the door of his residence to  the police but relented after an hour.  Though he claimed that he along with his son was assaulted which Mumbai police denied. Both the parties have in their kitty the videos of what happened inside the house.

Taking the opportunity to settle scores with Maharastra Chief Minister Uday Thackeray, Amit Shah termed the arrest as a crude reminder of the ‘emergency days’ of 1975 while Law Minister Ravi Shanker  echoed similar sentiments  claiming that the arrest was reprehensible and worrisome.

The case in which Arnab is an accused for abetment to the two suicides of an interior designer Anvay Naik and his mother goes back to 2017 when Anvay had done up a part of the Bombay dyeing property for the Republic TV office and studio floor.  Some other work had also been done by him for which he had billed over Rs 5 crore to Republic TV channel.

Despite upteen reminders, payment never came to Anvay who along with his mother committed suicide leaving behind a note describing the non payment as the cause of taking the drastic step as he had fallen in financial crisis.

Legally, this has nothing to do with muzzling the Press freedom so why are the political parties and people thumbing down the Maharastra government and the Mumbai police commissioner. Republic TV had spearheaded a campaign against the State government and Mumbai police commissioner and Arnab had almost declared an open war against the police commissioner by saying  that he would sue him for Rs 200 crore for dragging his name in the TRP scandal of the television channel.

The entire episode evoked mixed reactions from the social media  while one said that the Home Ministry must ask for Governor’s report on functioning of the Maharashtra government as the administration is not being run in accordance with the provisions of the Constituion of India.

Another social media blogger said that  Life, property and individual liberty of the people is not safe and has come in danger under this government .Center must sack the Maharashtra government under Art 356 of the Consttitutiion and recommend imposition of the President’s rule in the State.

Another said that the Republic Channel could not be trusted as it carried lots of slants in favour of the ruling party, BJP.

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Nitin Saxena
Nitin Saxena is a Senior Journalist who dabbled into Films and Academics before coming back to Journalim as a Columnist and Communication consultant

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