The news of Arnab Goswami’s arrest spread throughout the country like wild-fire. Social media is congested with news about his arrest, how it happened and people either defending him or saying this is karma.
On Wednesday early morning, Republic TV editor Arnab Goswami was detained by the Raigad police under Section 306 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) that relates to abetment to suicide.
Sanjay Mohite, the IG of Konkan Range stated that “Arnab Goswami is currently being taken to Raigad. He shall be interrogated by the investigating officer and the further course of action will be decided accordingly.”
He was picked up from his residence by several police officers and taken to the station via a police van. Immediately after this, Goswami alleged that the police physically assaulted him and even his family.
However, in the midst of all the claims of how this is this against freedom of press and ‘innocent Arnab’ that were being made, people are not fully aware of the actual case because of which Goswami has been detained.
What Is The Case?
The detainment or arrest of Arnab Goswami is in relation to a 2018 suicide case of an interior designer, Anvay Naik.
Goswami and 2 others had been accused of abetment of suicide in 2018 too when the suicide had occurred.
Anvay Naik had committed suicide at his house in Alibaug in May 2018 along with his mother. As per the police, while Anvay was said to have died of suicide, his mother’s case was a little unclear.
Some reports stated it as a double suicide while some said that the post mortem of Anvay’s mother, Kumud Naik, said that she had died of strangulation and not suicide.
In his note though, Anvay had said that he and his mother had decided to take this extreme step because of overdue unpaid payments. He took the names of 3 people, Arnab Goswami of Republic TV, Feroz Shaikh of IcastX/Skimedia and Neetish Sarda of Smartworks as being the cause of his death.
The note reportedly claimed that the three companies owed Naik’s company, Concorde Designs Pvt Ltd, a total sum of Rs. 5.4 crore, Goswami having Rs. 83 lakh, Feroz Shaikh having Rs. 4 crores and Neetish Sarda having Rs. 55 lakh.
Police, during their investigation, found that Anvay had been in deep debt and was unable to pay back his own debts to contractors.
At the time, Goswami had denied the charges and claimed he had already made his payments to the victim.
However, the case was closed by local Raigad police in April 2019 when, as per reports, they were unable to find appropriate evidence against the accused people.
Why Was It Revived?
The case was revived in May this year though when Anvay’s daughter, Adnya Naik, reached out to Anil Deshmukh, Maharashtra’s Home Minister regarding this case.
Deshmukh tweeted about this in May posting that, “Adnya Naik had complained to me that Alibaug Police had not investigated non-payment of dues from Arnab Goswami’s public which drover her entrepreneur father and grandma to suicide in May 2018. I’ve ordered a CID re-investigation of the case.”
She alleged that the police had not investigated properly, post which the Home Department transferred the case to CID in May itself.
With today’s detainment, the Maharashtra Police will now question Goswami on his involvement in the suicide and provide evidence of his own claims he made of having already paid his dues to the victim.
Naik’s wife, Akshita Naik, had not only filed an FIR against Goswami in 2018 but also claimed that Republic TV was the last project her husband did before his death.
As per reports, she claimed that Goswami refused to pay him after getting his work done. One might think that a debt-ridden person would have surely asked for his money multiple times.
The case was eventually transferred to the Local Crime Branch (LCB) of Raigad after reopening. LCB police inspector Jamil Shaikh, as per a report from The Hindu, also said that “After reopening the case, it was transferred to LCB. We then investigated and found more evidence. Mr. Goswami had attempted to transfer the money into Naik’s account after his death, but the bank rejected as the account holder was not alive. This showed that he actually owed the money.”
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