Republic Bangla, the Arnab Goswami-owned television news channel has suspended reporter Avishek Sengupta on Wednesday after it was revealed that he had been charged with kidnapping a businessman and extorting Rs 15 lakh from his family.
On Twitter, Republic Media Network announced Sengupta's suspension, saying, "Republic Bangla has suspended Avishek Sengupta from service." Avishek Sengupta was on probation and had not been confirmed as a Republic Bangla employee. His probation "will be suspended on May 25, 2021." According to the authorities, Sengupta has been missing since Monday, when the suspected abduction occurred.
Rs 2 Cr ransom demanded initially
Sengupta and four others have been accused of impersonating CBI investigators and abducting businessman Ajit Roy on Monday, claiming to have arrest orders against him.
The five accused wanted a ransom of Rs 2 crore from Roy's wife but were ultimately paid for Rs 15 lakh before releasing the businessman, according to the FIR filed against them at the Kasba police station in south Kolkata on Monday.
Three of Sengupta's collaborators, Swarup Roy, Pratik Sarkar, and Rajesh Adhikar, have also been arrested, according to police sources.
More persons are thought to be involved in the crime, according to the police, who have gathered CCTV evidence from numerous locations in their search for Sengupta.
Kolkata police have refiled an FIR under Sections 170 (pretending to be a public servant), 364A (kidnapping for ransom), 386 (extortion by putting a person in fear of death or grave harm), and 120B (punishment of criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code.
The fact that Avishek Sengupta impersonated a CBI employee and kidnapped Roy was discovered during the investigation. The CBI officers stated that after Roy was apprehended by Sengupta and his associates, his wife went to the CBI office to hunt for him and learned that the investigative agency had not filed any charges against the businessman. She began receiving ransom calls and agreed to pay Rs 15 lakh to reclaim her husband.