Will file defamation case against Naveen Jindal for extortion case, says Zee Chairman Subhash Chandra

Will file defamation case against Naveen Jindal for extortion case, says Zee Chairman Subhash Chandra
New Delhi Zee Group Chairman Subhash Chandra was questioned by the Delhi Police for the second day today in connection with the alleged Rs 100 crore extortion bid from Congress MP Naveen Jindal's company and denied any knowledge about the deal being worked out by his men.

After the grilling ended at 8.30 pm, he told reporters that the questioning "has ended as of now" and he would cooperate with the police if they called him again, if needed.

He said he will file a defamation case against Mr Jindal.

His son Puneet Goenka, who is the managing director of the group, was also questioned but he left the Crime Branch office within 30 minutes after their arrival at 1.30 pm.

After the nine-and-half-hour questioning and confronting them with two arrested editors, police asked the father and son to appear before investigations this afternoon. Both Mr Chandra and Mr Goenka came to crime branch office at around 1.30pm today.

"Yesterday, police work did not finish. They asked us to come again today. If they call us again we will cooperate. We have been cooperating. As of now questioning is over," Mr Chandra said.

He said police asked him whether he knew about the deal and he answered in the negative.

Mr Chandra also claimed that police did not ask him about any dummy agreement given by editors to Jindal company.

He said he got a text message from Naveen Jindal asking him whether he can meet Mr Chandra, who was in US at that time.

"I told him that if it was urgent he can call him. He said there was nothing urgent and then when he said he wanted to meet, I said, let's meet in November first week," he said.

Asked whether he knew that his editors were doing a deal, he said "I did not know. There is no Rs 100 crore deal. We haven't been saying anything. I came to know about the FIR only on October 7."

Zee Editors Sudhir Chaudhury and Samir Ahluwalia, who had been remanded to two days' police custody by a court, were brought to the Crime Branch office last night where Mr Chandra and his son were being questioned.

Mr Chandra had secured an interim protection from arrest till December 14 from a Delhi court.

Mr Chandra's questioning came after police sent three notices to him asking him to join the investigations in the case in which Mr Chaudhury and Mr Ahluwalia were arrested late last month following investigations into a complaint filed on October 2.

Mr Chandra had earlier told the police that he could not appear before them as he was out of the country but later on December 3 he told them he will be ready to appear within 96 hours of notice. Police then asked him to appear before them yesterday.

Zee Group has denied the allegations of extortion and demanded the immediate release of its two senior journalists, alleging the police action was "illegal" and "designed for something else".

Story First Published: December 09, 2012 16:37 IST

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