He requested the Press Council to stop this and take immediate intervention into this situation.

SP Udaykumar files complaint with press council against Arnab Goswami for sting operation
news Media Thursday, June 22, 2017 - 09:17

Two days after newly launched English news channel Republic TV broadcasted what it claimed was a sting operation on Kudankulam anti-nuclear activist SP Udayakumar, the activist has filed a complaint with the Press Council of India against the channel’s editor Arnab Goswami and two of his colleagues who produced the story.

However, Republic TV does not come under the purview of the Press Council of India. 

On Monday, Republic TV aired a series of stories on various activists who were part of the protest against the Kudankulam power plant project. In the video, a reporter, Shwetha Kothari asks him, “Just about my professor in UK who wants to contribute how should we go about it?” for which he responds, “We don’t have a bank account, what we can do is he can give it to the party. I can give you the receipt and then I can give you the bank account details. Yes, you send me your email address. We cannot accept money from foreign countries. You can ask your family or friends to do so. (On his behalf).”

She adds that her professor is very passionate about anti-nuclear protests and would like to contribute for the next round of protests. “If you pay in cash, no problem. If he wants to send it through bank, then he cannot do it, you have to do it through your family. But that could complicate it,” Udayakumar said.

Later, he says he refused to accept the money and says that it will put both of them into trouble.

However, in his complaint to the Press Council of India, he wrote, “On April 8, 2017, one “Shweta Sharma” (I later found out that her real name was Shweta Kothari) came to my home at Nagercoil and introduced herself as a “research scholar” from the Cardiff University in the UK. She asked for my help with her dissertation research. She had been accompanied by her “local friend” Sanjeev. I gave her several books and answered her questions.

“On April 9 2017, she requested me to stop by her hotel room as she had a few more questions,” he wrote. “There she told me that ‘one of her British professors’ was very keen on supporting our struggle against the Kudankulam nuclear power plant. I told her that we did not accept money from foreigners and our movement had no bank account also. She then asked me if there was any other way of donating money to us. I told her that my personal account was frozen and that even our party account could not receive foreign funds. So I said she could not donate money from abroad but her parents could do it here in India if she sent the money to them. I also mentioned clearly that I would give proper receipt and the money will be accounted for.  I also informed her that we were not interested in getting foreign funds,” as stated in the letter.

Moreover, he alleged that one of the reporters of the Republic TV was harassing his family in his absence. “Sanjeev showed up at my home again in the morning of June 21, 2017 and started harassing my family all over again. When my aged father objected to his ruthless behavior, he fraudulently reported on his TV that I personally had scolded him. I came to know about the whole incident when I came home in the evening,” he wrote in the letter.

He requested the Press Council to stop this and take immediate intervention into this situation.  

A source from Reporter TV told TNM that the reporter had reached Nagercoil only by 6 pm and had gone to Udayakumar's house then and the next day morning. But on both occasions, family members declined to make any comments.

 

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