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Thursday, April 15, 2021

Abetment to suicide case: High Court grants Arnab Goswami exemption from personal appearance till April 16

Goswami and two others, Feroze Shaikh and Nitish Sarda, were arrested on November 4, last year, after the police reopened a case involving the death Anvay Naik and his mother Kumud Naik at their home in Alibaug in May 2018.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai |
March 6, 2021 4:18:59 am
The Supreme Court had on November 11, last year, ordered the release of Goswami and other co-accused on interim bail on a bond of Rs 50,000 each. (File)

The Bombay High Court on Friday granted interim protection to Republic TV editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami, exempting him from personally appearing before the Alibaug magistrate in interior designer Anvay Naik abetment to suicide case till April 16. Goswami was earlier asked to appear before the court on March 10.

Goswami and two others, Feroze Shaikh and Nitish Sarda, were arrested on November 4, last year, after the police reopened a case involving the death Anvay Naik and his mother Kumud Naik at their home in Alibaug in May 2018. According to the police, the Naiks died by suicide over alleged non-payment of dues by Goswami’s channel and the companies of Shaikh and Sarda.

The Supreme Court had on November 11, last year, ordered the release of Goswami and other co-accused on interim bail on a bond of Rs 50,000 each.

Senior Advocate Sanjog Parab, appearing for Goswami, told a division bench of Justice S S Shinde and Justice Manish Pitale that his client has been directed to appear before the chief judicial magistrate at Alibaug on March 10 for committal of the trial in the case to a sessions court.

Parab added that due to the Covid-19 situation in Maharashtra, it would not be possible for Goswami to attend court at Alibaug in person. The magistrate had earlier exempted Goswami from personal appearance on two occasions. However, he was asked to appear on March 10.

“Since we are seized of the matter, we grant the petitioner (Goswami) interim protection with regard to exemption from appearance till April 16 when we will hear the plea further,” the HC said.

The bench adjourned till April 16 hearing on pleas filed by Goswami and the two others challenging proceedings and chargesheet filed in the case.

In the alleged TRP fraud case, after senior counsel Kapil Sibal, appearing for the Maharashtra government, assured the court that no coercive action will be taken against Goswami and other employees of ARG Outlier Media Private Limited, which runs Republic Media Network, till March 16, the bench extended their interim relief from arrest.

The court said that it will hear the case in physical mode from March 16 to expedite the proceedings.

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