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Tuesday, December 01, 2020

Happy with Arnab Goswami’s arrest, there was pressure to close the case from police earlier: Naik’s family

"We do not want to make the issue political. I have lost two family members due to this issue. We want people to understand how powerful people like Arnab Goswami get away with such things," Naik's family said.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: November 4, 2020 8:17:06 pm
Anvay Naik's family address reporters in Mumbai on Wednesday (Express photo)

The family of Anvay Naik said they were “happy with the arrest” of Republic TV editor Arnab Goswami for allegedly abetting the suicide of the 53-year-old interior designer in 2018 while claiming that there was a lot of pressure on them to close the case from the police earlier. A team of Alibaug police picked up Goswami from his Lower Parel house in the morning and he was subsequently arrested.

“We are happy with Arnab Goswami’s arrest. There was a lot of pressure on us to close the case from the police earlier. Husband e-mailed Arnab asking to return money and that it was matter of life and death for him. He didn’t meet our father,” Naik’s daughter said.

Naik’s daughter Adnya claimed non-payment of dues by Republic TV had driven her father and grandmother to suicide. “We do not want to make the issue political. I have lost two family members due to this issue. We want people to understand how powerful people like Arnab Goswami get away with such things. The arrest should have been made much earlier,” Adnya said.

Comparing the case to the suicide of Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput, Naik’s wife said no arrests were made despite her husband leaving behind a suicide note naming Goswami and two others.

“Arnab Goswami kept saying arrests should be made in Sushant Singh Rajput suicide case where there was no suicide note. My husband left behind a suicide note naming Arnab and two others but no arrests were made. How is this fair?” she said.

Republic TV editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami steps out after hearing from Alibaug court. Alibaug police picked up Goswami from his residence in Mumbai (Express photo by Narendra Vasker)

The case dates back to May 2018 when interior designer Anvay Naik, along with his mother Kumud Naik, were found dead at their bungalow in Alibaug. The police had found a suicide in which Anvay said he and his mother decided to take the extreme step on account of payments due to them not being cleared by the owners of three companies – television journalist Arnab Goswami of Republic TV, Feroz Shaikh of IcastX/Skimedia and Niteish Sarda of Smartworks.

The three firms owed Naik’s company, Concorde Designs Pvt Ltd, Rs 83 lakh, Rs 4 crore and Rs 55 lakh respectively, the note added.

In May this year, Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh said the state CID would re re-investigate the case. The case was closed by the Raigad Police last year. Officers outside Arnab’s residence said that the very court where the Raigad police had filed a closure report has given permission to Raigad police to reopen the case. CID officials said they have no case against Goswami.

In a release, Republic TV 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 organisation”. 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,” the statement said.

“The very fact that the open physical assault on Arnab, his family and on team Republic was caught on tape and beamed across the world this morning in a closed case is proof of the desperation with which the Mumbai Police and Maharashtra Government is operating,” it added.

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