“Emergency in Maharashtra”: Support pours in for Republic chief Arnab Goswami as Mumbai Police assaults and arrests him

Arnab Goswami was assaulted and subsequently arrested by Mumbai Police earlier today in a 2018 abetment to suicide case which was closed by the court.

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Supports pours in for Arnab Goswami as Mumbai Police intensifies its witch-hunt against Republic TV
Arnab Goswami(Source: Yahoo News)

In what could be described an egregious display of brute force, Mumbai Police not only barged into the house of Republic TV Editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami but also roughed him up and his minor son, along with the other family members this morning. Goswami was subsequently arrested by the Mumbai Police.

Soon after his arrest, Arnab Goswami spoke to the media, condemning the actions of Mumbai Police. He said that Mumbai Police assaulted his wife, minor son at his residence. Reportedly, Arnab Goswami’s elderly father-in-law and mother-in-law were also assaulted by the Mumbai Police.

The arrest of the journalist evoked a torrent of messages of support and solidarity from several prominent personalities who denounced the Mumbai Police’s action against the Republic TV Editor-in-chief and his family.

Union Ministers and other prominent personalities extend their support to Arnab Goswami

Union Home Minister Amit Shah responded to the arrest of Arnab Goswami, saying Congress and its allies have shamed the democracy yet again. He added that the misuse of power against the Republic TV and its Editor-in-Chief is an attack on individual freedom and the 4th pillar of democracy. Shah said that the assault on Arnab reminded one of the Emergency days and the attack on the freedom of the press must be and will be opposed.

Cabinet Minister Smriti Irani also came out in support of senior journalist Arnab Goswami, saying those who don’t stand up in support of Arnab Goswami are tactically supporting fascism. Irani tweeted that one may not like Arnab, perhaps despise his very existence but one’s silence means his/her support to suppression.

Law and Justice Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad questioned the silence of Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi over the reprehensible attack on freedom of the press in Maharashtra. Prasad added that while the mother-son duo were increasingly vocal levelling allegations against PM Modi, when their own government is blatantly suppressing the freedom of press, their silence demonstrates their hypocrisy.

The chief minister of Assam, Sarbananda Sonowal, reacted to the development by condemning the assault on the senior journalist Arnab Goswami by Mumbai Police as a “black day of Indian democracy”. He also asked for an immediate release of Mr Goswami and urged to end the vendetta politics and restoration of freedom of the press in Maharashtra.

Minister of Information and Broadcasting, Prakash Javadekar condemned the assault against Arnab Goswami by Mumbai Police. Taking to Twitter, Javadekar said that the attack on Arnab Goswami reminded him of the Emergency days when the press was repressed by the ruling Indira Gandhi’s regime.

BJP President JP Nadda said just like India didn’t forgive Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi for Emergency and the assault on the freedom of speech, they will similarly punish Sonia-Rahul for their brazen attack on the freedom of the press to get equal with journalists.

Union Minister Kiren Rijiju labelled the arrest of Arnab Goswami by Mumbai Police as “fascist intolerance towards freedom of expression” and reminded that Indians will fight back against such kinds of draconian acts.

Popular actor Kangana Ranaut, who had herself been a victim of Maharashtra government’s vindictive politics, posted a video message on Twitter, expressing her solidarity with Republic TV Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami.

“Maharashtra government today entered the house of Arnab Goswami, assaulted him, and arrested him. I want to ask them, how many voices will they suppress? How many houses will they level? How many people will they strangle? Why be angry when someone calls you a penguin? You look like a penguin so people call you that,” Kangana said.

Arnab Goswami at loggerheads with Mumbai Police

Arnab Goswami has been at loggerhead with the Mumbai Police ever since he had raised protruding questions of the Maharashtra government and interim Congress president Sonia Gandhi for her silence on the horrifying lynching of the Hindu Sadhus in Palghar. Since then, Arnab Goswami and his channel Republic TV have been the number one target of the Maharashtra government.

Arnab Goswami was put through a wringer by the Mumbai Police for his prime time show on the killings of Hindu Sadhus in Palghar. A case was also registered against Republic TV for its coverage of migrants crisis at the Bandra station on April 14-15. Republic TV journalist and cameraman were arrested by the Mumbai Police while covering a story in Navi Mumbai this September.

Another Republic TV journalist Pradeep Bhandari was harassed by a team of Mumbai Police personnel who encircled him and ultimately detained him illegally. A few weeks back, Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh convened a press meeting, alleging that Republic TV had indulged in TRP manipulation. However, it was later revealed that the complaint of TRP manipulation case had the name of India Today channel and not Republic TV. Even witness in the case was coerced into taking Republic TV’s name. More recently, Singh attempted to tarnish Arnab Goswami’s image by calling him the “Mumbai’s biggest hawala operator”.

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