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Bennett, Coleman & Co Ltd (BCCL), also known as the Times Group, has lodged a police complaint against Arnab Goswami, founder of recently launched English news channel Republic TV, and its journalist Prema Sridevi for alleged infringement of copyright and property theft.
BCCL filed the complaint with the Azad Maidan police station here on Tuesday, alleging commission of offences of theft, criminal breach of trust, misappropriation of property and infringement of the company’s intellectual properties by using the same on Republic TV on multiple occasions on May 6 and 8.
BCCL is the media conglomerate that owns The Times of India newspaper, along with several other entities and TV channels including Times Now, which was earlier headed by Goswami as the Editor-in-Chief.
“BCCL owns several intellectual assets in the form of stories, audio-video content, documents, tapes, etc., gathered by its team of reporters and journalists during its news gathering and broadcasting operations,” the company said.
In the police complaint, the BCCL said two “exposes” by Republic TV displayed material, in the form of audio tapes of phone conversations, that was procured and accessed while Goswami and Prema were in the employment of Times Now.
Goswami and Prema Sridevi have acknowledged that the audio conversation in the ‘expose’ relating to Sunanda Pushkar case was in their possession for the last two years while they were employed with Times Now, the complaint said.
“Goswami and Sridevi have wilfully, deliberately and with knowledge converted for their benefit and used the intellectual property of Times Now, thereby committing the offence of criminal misappropriation of property,” it said.
An officer at the Azad Maidan police station said they have received the BCCL complaint.
Reacting to the BCCL complaint, Goswami said, “It is a David versus Goliath fight.”
“Goliaths can sit in the police station and David will sit in the news room,” Goswami said, adding, “Goliath is down to his knees,” Goswami said.