Journalist Sreenivasan Jain has taken to Facebook page to express his frustration on NDTV pulling down his report on loans given to Jay Shah’s companies.
In an extraordinary Facebook post, Jain, who anchors popular show Truth Vs Hype on NDTV, wrote, “A week ago, a report by Manas Pratap Singh and me on loans given to Jay Shah’s companies was taken down from NDTV’s website. NDTV’s lawyers said it needed to be removed for “legal vetting”. It has still not been restored. This is deeply unfortunate, since the report is based entirely on facts in the public domain and makes no unsubstantiated or unwarranted assertions.”
Jain said that the development had left him in a quandary but he was going to continue working with the NDTV for now.
He added, “A situation like this presents journalists with hard choices. For now, I am treating this is as a distressing aberration and have decided to continue to do the journalism that I have always done – on NDTV. All of this has been conveyed to NDTV.”
In a stunning revelation, website The Wire had claimed that a company owned by the BJP President Amit Shah’s son, Jay Amitbhai Shah, grew by 16,000 times after Narendra Modi formed the government at the Centre and the former became the saffron party’s chief.
According to the report, the balance sheets and annual reports obtained from the RoC had revealed that in the financial years ending March 2013 and 2014, Shah’s Temple Enterprise Private Ltd. engaged in negligible activity and recorded losses of Rs 6,230 and Rs 1,724 respectively. In 2014-15, it showed a profit of Rs 18,728 on revenues of only Rs 50,000 before jumping to a turnover of Rs 80.5 crore in 2015-16.
Jay Shah has now filed a criminal defamation case against the website and journalists associated with them seeking damages worth Rs 100 crore.
NDTV was recently rumoured to have been in the process of being sold to the founder of SpiceJet, Ajay Singh, the man who helped Modi in the Lok Sabha election campaign in 2014. Although, the channel denied the report to SEBI, senior executives in the channel had confirmed the report.