National Basketball Association condemns CBI raid on NDTV promoters, calls for fair probe

Press Club condemns 'attempt to intimidate media' over NDTV row

Top journalists and editors gathered at the Press Club of India in Delhi to condemn the raids on NDTV.

Senior journalist Rajdeep Sardesai said that in the present atmosphere, silence was not an option. Senior journalist Dua said that the situation is tending to become like the way things were at the time of emergency and if the journalism fraternity does not stand united, it may soon go that way. "They want to disembowel them".

He said Modi government was using three instruments to control media-"first stuffing the mouth of media with bribe of ads, second spreading fear and third applying overt pressure of which NDTV is an example". "Fix your mistake. When I pray, I pray more for them than for you", Roy added. It is a signal to all of us: we can suppress you even if you haven't done anything.

Renowned economist, journalist, author and politician Arun Shourie also advocated for the importance of free press and vehemently condemned the blatant "attack" on NDTV in the garb of "bank fraud".Describing Mr Prannoy Roy as the man who has shielded the "Press freedom in India" in recent decades, he said, 'the government must realise that those who try to put their hands on media have got their hands burned therefore they must withdraw it. "Tujh se pahle jo yahan takht nasheen tha, usko bhi tere jaise khud ke khuda hone kaa yaqeen tha [The one who was occupying the throne here before you too had the false notion of being a god just like you]", said Shourie. If the answer was "yes" or supportive of the bill, the reporters would walk out. "Do not call them to your functions".

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Shourie also urged journalists to redouble work that annoys the government.

Criticising the Narendra Modi government, constitutional expert and president of Bar Association of India Fali S. Nariman, while addressing the audience, read the exchange between NDTV anchor Nidhi Razdan and BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra on a debate show where the saffron panellist had accused the news channel of having an agenda, following which the anchor had asked him to leave the studio. "You should excavate that". "No one is immune from being prosecuted under a criminal offence, but the manner, circumstances give me reason to believe all of this is unjustified attack on press and media freedom", he said. "CBI lodged the FIR not on the basis of any discovery of its own but only and exclusively on the basis of information supplied by one individual, Sanjay Dutt". Press is the foundation of democracy.

Veteran journalist Kuldeep Nayyar the urged journalists to rise to the occasion in this battle for independent media as "We can not and should not allow anybody to muzzle the voice of media".

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