NDTV founders not allowed to fly out

Mumbai: News television network NDTV's founders Prannoy Roy and his wife Radhika, who are facing an alleged corruption case, were prevented from flying abroad on Friday on the basis of a "preventive" lookout circular issued by the CBI.0

In a statement, the media company said Roy and his wife were stopped from travelling abroad on the basis of "a fake and wholly unsubstantiated corruption case initiated by the CBI" two years ago.

The Central Bureau of Investigation officials in New Delhi said a "preventive" LOC was issued against the duo in June in connection with an alleged fraud in relation to ICICI Bank. They were stopped from leaving the country on the basis of that LOC, they added.

A preventive LOC is aimed at stopping a person from leaving the country but does not warrant detention by authorities. The said LOC was only to prevent the duo from leaving the country, not to detain them, the officials said.

Roy and his wife were on their way to an undisclosed destination and were scheduled to return on August 16, NDTV said. "Today's action is, along with events like raids on media owners, a warning to media to fall in line, or else…" the company said, hinting at intimidation.

This was "a complete subversion of basic rights", it added. The statement also described the two founders of the media network as "journalists" but did not specify the reasons for their travel.

The development comes more than two years after premises of the Roys were searched by the CBI in connection with the alleged bank fraud case.

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