A report in Times of India has detailed how the Maharashtra government carefully plotted a plan – “Operation Arnab” to carry out a witch-hunt against Republic TV chief Arnab Goswami.
According to the Times of India report, the Maharashtra Home Minister and NCP leader Anil Deshmukh formed a high-level 40-member team led by Konkan range Inspector General Sanjay Mohite to arrest Arnab Goswami in the 2018 suicide abetment case.
The Maharashtra Home department devised a plan “Operation Arnab” to nab Republic TV Chief Arnab Goswami in a 2018 suicide case. A team of police began the operation days after Raigad police allegedly obtained permission to probe into the alleged suicide case of architect Anvay Naik. To arrest Arnab, the Maharashtra government assembled a team of 40 personnel, who were mostly drawn from Mumbai and Raigad police.
IG Mohite reportedly drafted a plan to arrest Arnab and the responsibility to execute the plan was entrusted to Mumbai’s ‘encounter specialist’ Sachin Vaze.
“For the team led by Mohite, it was a challenging task in view of the powerful Arnab. We acted very carefully, every member of the team observed restraint despite provocation,” a senior cabinet member said to Times of India.
Our people surrounded his house, was a secret operation, Maha cabinet minister
Explaining the details of “Operation Arnab” as if it was a mission to capture a hardened criminal, the cabinet member cited by TOI further added that after the preliminary probe, it was confirmed that Arnab was allegedly ‘involved in the abetment to suicide case’. He added that ‘their people’ made several rounds of the building where Arnab was residing. “It was a secret operation. We were fearing that if the information is leaked, Arnab may flee the city to avoid arrest,” he said.
On Wednesday morning, Mumbai Police barged into the residence of Arnab Goswami, assaulted him and his family as they dragged the Republic TV chief to arrest him.
Reportedly, the Maharashtra Police carrying out “Operation Arnab” chose the morning hours to ensure he was at home. “It was a planned operation, even small issues were taken care of. It was decided who will knock at the door, who will talk to Arnab and his family members and what the course of action would be if he resists. Arnab did resist. However, after Vaze explained to him the legal position if he failed to join the investigation, it was a smooth affair,” he said.
Mumbai Police arrests its own cop for closing the case in 2018
In a bizarre turn of events, Mumbai Police arrested one of its own police officers on the charges that he had filed a closure report in the 2018 suicide case.
According to the reports, a day after Arnab Goswami was arrested on the charges of abetting suicide in 2018, the Mumbai Police arrested a cop for filing closure report citing no evidence to probe the case. The cop was the investigating officer in the 2018 Anvay Naik’s suicide case.
An FIR was filed against Arnab Goswami in an alleged abetment to suicide case in May 2018. The FIR was filed after An Interior Designer had allegedly committed suicide in his bungalow in Alibaug. In his alleged suicide note, Anvay Naik had claimed Goswami had allegedly not paid Rs 83 lakh for a design project of a studio. However, Goswami was investigated and the case was closed by the court after a closure report was filed by the Police.
Republic TV had earlier clarified that the charges were false and they had made 90% of the payments due to the interior designer’s firm and the remaining amount was to be paid after the completion of the work which was never done.