Maharashtra Minister launched “Operation Arnab”, deployed 40 policemen to break Arnab

The arrest of Republic TV Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami sparked outrage among people in the country, many called it a “blatant misuse of state power”. Now, according to reports, the Maharashtra government has 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 drafted a high-level 40-member team led by Kokan range inspector general Sanjay Mohite to arrest Arnab Goswami in the 2018 suicide abetment case.

The preparations for “Operation Arnab” began after Raigad police once again reopened their investigation into the alleged suicides of architect Anway Naik and his mother Kumud in 2018. In all, 40 personnel were drawn from Mumbai and Raigad police.

The Maharashtra Home department devised a plan “Operation Arnab” to nab Republic TV Chief Arnab Goswami in a 2018 suicide case.

IG Mohite reportedly formed the plan to harass Arnab while the responsibility to execute it was handed over to high-profile 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 told TOI.

The cabinet member told the TOI that it came to the fore after the preliminary probe 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 house of Arnab Goswami, attacked him and his family and on top of that they dragged him 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.

Writer, historian, and activist Dharam Sikarwar is a very active author The Youth. He writes on national and international issues, environment, politics. He is an avid book reader as well.