After issuing a statement condemning the summons served by Mumbai police on the investors of the Republic TV network, the channel today issued another statement this time calling out the Mumbai police for demanding editorial access to the the newsroom of the channel. Terming the action of Mumbai police as “an unprecedented move in the history of Indian media”, the media channel in their statement said that Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh wanted the details of every journalist working with the channel including their contact details, addressed and even login IDs.
The other things that Mumbai Police have demanded is access to include newsroom software details, newsflow with broadcast rundown details, details of shift in-charges, copies of weekly schedule of news desk and the details of the technician familiar with the newsroom software. While agreeing to cooperate with legitimate means of investigation, the channel refused to provide access of their newsroom software and other details to Mumbai Police.
The channel urged the Ministry of Information and Broadcast to take cognisance of the matter and stop Mumbai police from “trampling the press freedom”.
Hounding of Republic TV by Mumbai Police
In an interview given to the Editor of OpIndia Hindi, Minister of Information and Broadcasting Prakash Javadekar had criticised the action of Mumbai police against Republic TV. “What Mumbai Police is doing, no one will endorse this”, the Minister said. Mumbai police had falsely implicated Republic TV in the TRP scam on the basis of an FIR naming India Today. The police had also reportedly coerced witnesses into naming Republic TV in the TRP scam. Mumbai police had also sought details of all financial transactions of the channel ever since its inception.