Court nixes Sakshi's plea to free bank accounts

Court nixes Sakshi's plea to free bank accounts

Troubled days seem to be in store for the Sakshi newspaper and TV channel as the CBI Special Court on Monday rejected three petitions filed by the flagship companies of Y S Jaganmohan Reddy seeking defreezing of their accounts.

Following the freezing of the current accounts of Jagati Publications, Indira Television and Janani Infra by CBI on May 8, the companies had filed three separate petitions the next day. Under sections 102B of CRPC, the CBI blocked the media business operations of the YSR Congress party president.

Counsel for Jagati publications pleaded the court to defreeze the current accounts as the newspaper and TV channel, which employ over 20,000 staff, have to meet the monthly expenditure running into crores of rupees.

The CBI opposed the move, pointing out that Rs 249 crore cash in hand and Rs 1,172 crore bank balance was shown in the balance sheets of the companies. The agency urged the court not to entertain the plea, indicating that it will go for more seizures if the need arises.

Earlier, the CBI also directed the Labour and the Information and Public Relations departments to verify Sakshi's claim on the number of its employees. The firms had contended that the families of the employees and others dependent on the companies would be affected by the freezing of accounts.

The Labour Department has submitted a report to the State Human Rights Commission.
Meanwhile, Sakshi is all set to knock on the doors of Andhra Pradesh High Court opposing the CBI Special Court’s verdict. “As the High Court is on vacation, we will move the petition in the vacation court,” Sakshi counsel Ashok Reddy said.

'We have newsprint to last for another five months and other bank accounts to fall back on. We will continue to air the channel and ensure that our newspaper reaches the people every morning,” Sajjala Ramakrishna Reddy, editorial chairman of Jagati Publications, told reporters.

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