Zee News editors sent to judicial custody

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New Delhi, Nov 30: Sudhir Chaudhary and Samir Ahluwalia, the two senior editors of Zee News, were sent to judicial custody for 14 days in connection with the Jindal Group extortion case. The duo, who will be kept in judicial custody till Dec 14, has filed a second plea that will be heard on Saturday.

Congress MP and industrialist Naveen Jindal had accused the two editors of demanding Rs 100 crore from his company, Jindal Steel Power Limited (JSPL), for not carrying stories of coal block allocations controversy involving the company's name.

Three other top Zee News officials, including CEO Puneet Goenka and Jawahar Goel, also joined investigations after they were served notice by Delhi Police. Zee Group head Subhash Chandra was also sent a notice earlier. However, Chandra's legal team said he can join the investigation only after Dec 5.

The controversy broke out after Jindal filed a criminal case against the network last month for carrying out a sting operation about the JSPL's alleged involvement in the coal block allocation scam that recently created a huge uproar across the country. Jindal brought charges that he was asked to pay cash to stop publication of negative stories about his company.

Jindal also released tapes that had recorded conversation between Ahluwalia and his team members. Zee Network, however, refuted the allegations and said it was being targetted for carrying stories against Jindal. It counter-alleged that Jindal's men wanted to give them bribe for not publishing negative stories. The network said that its editors had met Jindal's representatives with a dummy contract.

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