Republic TV Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami and the channel’s Chief Financial Officer S Sundaram were questioned at NM Joshi Marg police station on Wednesday. The questioning was in connection with the case registered at the Pydhonie police station, in which the secretary of Raza Educational Welfare Society, Irfan Abubakar Shaikh, alleged that Goswami was trying to disturb communal harmony of the country through his television show.
In the May 3 FIR, Shaikh gave a statement to the police that “Goswami tried to create hatred against the Muslims in the country during a show on April 29. The channel had telecast the protest of migrants that had gathered near Bandra railway station on April 14, during which he had raised a question as to why are mobs only gathering near mosques during the lockdown”.
The complainant also handed over the footage of the show on a pen drive, which the police claim will be used as evidence in the case. The Pydhonie police had then registered a case under sections 153, 153 A, 295 A, 500, 505 (2), 511 and 120 (B) of the Indian Penal Code.
The Pydhonie police had summoned him for questioning. But owing to the coronavirus pandemic, and the police station located in a containment zone, on his advocate’s plea at the Bombay High Court, the court had granted the TV anchor permission to appear at the NM Joshi Marg police station instead.
Sundaram was called to the police station at 11 am. He was questioned for five and a half hours. Addressing the media outside the police station, Sundaram said, “The questions were almost similar to what they had asked earlier. Before it started, I told them that I am not from the editorial and won’t be able to answer questions regarding that. There were no questions pertaining to the show.”
Goswami, who was called to the police station at 2 pm, waited outside in his car. He was eventually questioned at 4.30 pm for about two hours.
Addressing the media outside the police station, Goswami said, “They were showing me a 40-second video clip on the basis of which they were questioning me. I have proved that they have taken a three per cent clip of the entire show which was edited out of context. I countered their questions with the other video clips of the show and confronted them with facts. As they had no further questions to ask, they started asking me about Twitter and Facebook account. They asked me to leave and told me that they will conduct further investigation and call me again.”
“I have fully cooperated with them and I will fight it in the court,” he said. Goswami further said it was a false case. “This is a case enforced against me by the Vadra Congress.”
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