Is Arnab Goswami being targeted due to his comments on Sonia Gandhi?
Arnab Goswami was interrogated late last month for his comments on Sonia Gandhi regarding the Palghar lynching. He was questioned close to 12 hours though no action has been taken since then.
The Suicide Case
On May 6th 2018 when the Fadnavis Government was in power, Arnab Goswami was slapped with a suicide abetment case in Alibaug. This was regarding a suicide of an interior designer Anvay Naik at that time. In his suicide note, he mentioned that about 5.4 crores was outstanding from 3 individuals, Arnab Goswami, Feroz Shaikh and Niteish Sarda. In the FIR it was mentioned that Arnab Goswami of ARG Outlier of Republican TV had not cleared dues worth 83 lakhs. In a press release issued later, Republic TV clarified that all amounts due to Mr Naik had already been cleared. All the above comes from a TOI report filed on May 7th, 2018.
In reports released later, it was found that Republic TV had withheld Rs 40 lakhs as quality standards had not been met. The Police also mentioned that Anvay Naik had likely first strangulated his mother before killing himself.
Not much appeared to have been done about this suicide case until a video by the widow of Anvay Naik surfaced earlier this month.
Yesterday, Anil Deshmukh, Home Minister of Maharashtra announced a CID probe into the suicide after his daughter Adnya alleged that the case was not properly investigated by the Alibaug Police. Whether the case was investigated well or not, the fact that the CID case has come soon after the comments on Sonia Gandhi made by Arnab Goswami suggest a strong linkage between the two.
While cases like these are unlikely to end in conviction, the nuisance value is quite high. One, it makes the targeted journalist spend time on the investigation and case and Two, it serves as a warning to Journalists in general to tow the line of the ruling Government. However, it is unlikely that Arnab Goswami will change much. With an assortment of lawyers, he is least likely to be bothered by such cases. What will really bother him is a drop in viewers. Republic Bharat (Hindi) is the 4th most watched Hindi News Channel and not far from the 2nd position. Republic TV (English) is the most watched English News channel. It is Good Going for Arnab as of now!