NDTV vows to fight back the witch-hunt

While the CBI conducted ‘search and seizure’ operation on Monday morning at the residence of Prannoy Roy, founder of NDTV, the media house dismissed the charges as ‘false’

 Photo by Pradeep Gaur/Mint via Getty Images  
Photo by Pradeep Gaur/Mint via Getty Images

NH Web Desk

Four teams of Central Bureau of Investigation on Monday morning began a search operation at the residence of Prannoy Roy in Greater Kailash-1 in New Delhi besides three other locations in Dehradun and Delhi.

Agencies confirmed that the CBI had registered a case against Roy, his wife Radhika Roy and others for causing loss of ₹48 crore to ICICI bank.

Describing the ‘raid’ as harassment, a statement released on behalf of NDTV and posted on the NDTV website declared, “This morning, the CBI stepped up the concerted harassment of NDTV and its promoters based on the same old endless false accusations. NDTV and its promoters will fight tirelessly against this witch-hunt by multiple agencies. We will not succumb to these attempts to blatantly undermine democracy and free speech in India. We have one message to those who are trying to destroy the institutions of India and everything it stands for: we will fight for our country and overcome these forces.”

Roy, psephologist, pioneer of TV journalism in India and founder of NDTV, among the most credible media houses in the country, has contested charges in the past, especially after the Enforcement Directorate in 2015 slapped a ₹2,030 crore notice on NDTV for allegedly violating the provisions of the Foreign Exchange Management Act ( FEMA) while routing funds through the foreign offices of the media house.

The notice had then alleged that promoters Roy and his wife besides senior executive KVL Narayan Rao had violated RBI provisions for foreign funding.

While there was outrage in various sections with commentator Ajai Shukla describing the act as symptomatic of a ‘Goonda Raj’.

While Shukla held that India officially is no longer a democracy, tweets defending the CBI raid alleged that the case dates back to the period before 2010, when MJ Akbar had reported the loan worth ₹300 crore apparently lent by the ICICI Bank to the Roys.

NDTV released a statement on the CBI raids and it can be found here.

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Published: 05 Jun 2017, 11:51 AM