Attempt to muzzle free speech, says NDTV after CBI raid

New Delhi, June 5 The CBI on Monday raided NDTV founder Prannoy Roy’s residence in Delhi over an alleged bank loan default, which the national news network said was part of the probe agency’s “concerted harassment” to muzzle free speech.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) registered the case against Roy, his wife Radhika, a private company and others and conducted searches at the Roy’s Greater Kailash-I residence in south Delhi for causing alleged loss to a bank.

“Searches are being conducted today (Monday) at four places, including Delhi and Dehradun,” CBI spokesperson R.K. Gaur told.

The case is linked to an alleged bank loan default.

The news network said in a strongly-worded statement that the CBI has “stepped up the concerted harassment of NDTV and its promoters based on the same old endless false accusations”.

“NDTV and its promoters will fight tirelessly against this witch-hunt by multiple agencies. We will not succumb to these attempts to blatantly undermine democracy and free speech in India,” the statement said.

It said the news network had “one message” for those who were “trying to destroy the institutions of India and everything it stands for”.

“We will fight for our country and overcome these forces.”

The CBI raids come days after NDTV anchor Nidhi Razdan had an on-air verbal scuffle with BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra, after he alleged the news network was following an “agenda”, during a debate over the new central notification on cow trade and slaughter. The BJP leader was told to leave the programme.

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