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Published On: Fri, Sep 22nd, 2017

Have not entered into any agreement for sale: NDTV

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dc-Cover-iss492mpkj8bbr8fg1dsq0e9a1-20170922094743.MediNEW DELHI :  NDTV has said that the promoters of the company have not entered into any agreement for sale of their stake in the Company to any person, the news broadcast channel informed the Bombay Stock Exchange on Friday.
It told the exchange the company is mindful of its obligations under clause 30 of the Listing Regulations of the BSE and shall promptly intimate it of any event required to be disclosed under the said regulations. Earlier in the day, an Indian Express report had said SpiceJet founder Ajay Singh has bought a major stake in the news media company.
Ajay Singh had coined BJP’s 2014 campaign slogan – ‘Ab ki baar Modi sarkaar’. He had also turned around an ailing SpiceJet after taking back its control.  It may be noted that the founders of NDTV had in the past come under the CBI lens for alleged ‘under the table share transactions’, a charge that they had strongly denied terming it as “an attempt to muzzle free press”.1496646495-6079

The Indian Express today reported SpiceJet owner Ajay Singh has picked up majority holding in NDTV. The Indian Express in its report wrote when the newspaper asked if NDTV has been sold to SpiceJet’s Ajay Singh, the source said, “Yes, the deal has been finalised and Ajay Singh will take control of NDTV along with editorial rights.”
The report said that SpiceJet Chairman Ajay Singh will have controlling stake in NDTV of around 40 per cent and the promoters Prannoy Roy and Radhika Roy will hold around 20 per cent in the company. He will also pick up NDTV’s debt of over Rs 400 crore and the total deal is valued at around Rs 600 crore, the report said. Prannoy Roy and his wife Radhika Roy had founded NDTV in 1988.

Earlier this year, the CBI had carried out a search operations at the offices and homes of NDTV founder Prannoy Roy over allegations of indulging in a criminal conspiracy and causing loss to a bank. The investigating agency registered a case against Prannoy and his wife Radhika, their private firm RRPR Holdings and NDTV India for wrongful gain of Rs 48 crore.

The CBI in its FIR said: “NDTV and ICICI entered into a criminal conspiracy to transfer ownership of a news company (NDTV) to a shell company, against banking rules, SEBI Act.” However, the NDTV termed the whole incident as a “witch-hunt” and an effort to muzzle free speech.

The CBI is not the only central agency to probe the media house, NDTV has also been under Enforcement Directorate scanner for an allegedly money laundering case. In 2015, the ED had issued a show-cause notice to NDTV Ltd for bringing foreign investments of around Rs 2,030 crore into the parent company between 2007-10 allegedly in violation of Foreign Exchange Management Act or Fema guidelines.

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