Stunning revelation by Gautam Adani
Industrialist Gautam Adani and NDTV promoter Prannoy Roy have stuck a deal. In his interview with Financial Times, published on Friday, Adani reveals that he had asked Roy to continue as the chair of NDTV even after acquiring the majority. Adani who had got 29% shares of NDTV from Mukesh Ambani’s linked firm Vishvapradhan Commercial Private Ltd (VCCPL), has now floated an Open Offer to acquire 26% more shares of NDTV from November 22 to December 5. Prannoy Roy and his wife together own 32% shares in NDTV.
Adani has asked Roy to continue as Chairman
He (Adani) said, “the cost of creating an international media group would be ‘negligible’ for the conglomerate and he had invited NDTV owner-founder Prannoy Roy to remain as chair. Adani’s AMG Media Network also bought a stake this year in business news platform BQ Prime, formerly BloombergQuint,” reports Financial Times. Neither Prannoy Roy nor his minions have uttered a word on Adani’s revelations.
This shows that the posturing of Prannoy Roy was a sham. It is unlikely that Prannoy Roy will continue on the Board of NDTV after Adani gets 56% shares by mid-December and going to accept Adani’s offer to “remain as chair”. It is certain that Roy will prefer a safe escape from the cases he is facing from the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and expected Enforcement Directorate’s (ED) cases – apart from the huge tax evasion penalties from the Income Tax Department.
Roy and his wife’s 32% shares in NDTV are currently valued at around Rs.900 crore. But as per the Income Tax notices, he owes more than Rs.800 crore as a penalty. At present, he faces two CBI cases. In the first case, a First Information Report (FIR) was registered in June 2017 after raiding his home for ICICI Bank loan fraud. From the loan taken of around Rs.400 crore, CBI has all details of siphoning off more than Rs.40 crore to acquire a palatial bungalow in Cape Town, South Africa by the Roys.
A second CBI case (FIR) was registered in August 2019 for floating 38 shell companies in tax havens across the Globe to launder money. In both of these cases, the CBI under Prime Minister Narendra Modi has not yet registered a charge sheet, except for summoning Roy and his wife Radhika a few times to the CBI office. Why were the charge sheets not filed to date?
ED is yet to jump in
Both CBI cases involve money laundering. Why has the ED not jumped in? It is easy – Adani’s offer is needed for Prannoy Roy to buy peace and get away with the sale of his 32% of the shares in NDTV – around Rs.700 crore or with some premium as full and final settlement and to walk away.
What happens next?
It is obvious that Prannoy Roy has cut a deal with Gautam Adani. And while Adani will take some, other Editors will have to walk. Some in the upper echelons of the company have already sold their shares and made a tidy profit. Now let us wait and watch what happens in NDTV.
To know more about the scams surrounding NDTV, you can buy my book NDTV Frauds, available at Amazon.
 Asia’s richest man Gautam Adani reveals global media ambitions – Nov 25,2022, Financial Times
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