The Siasat Daily's Bengaluru edition was shut down after Mohammed Mansoor Khan, the director of I Monetary Advisory (IMA) group, fled the country earlier this month. The Bengaluru and Hubbali editions have not been published since Khan fled to the middle-east.
The printing of the Urdu daily was managed by Daanish Publications under suspended Congress leader Roshan Baig's son Ruman Baig. According to reports, the printing stopped on June 10 over pending dues to MNS Printers, which was printing the all-colour newspaper, reports Bangalore Mirror.
Established in 1949, The Siasat Daily is an Indian Urdu-language newspaper from Hyderabad. In 1999, Roshan Baig had franchised the Bengaluru edition of the newspaper.
The Siasat Daily was unofficially maintained and managed by Mansoor Khan from 2017. It is alleged that the Urdu daily was used as a mouthpiece for IMA by Khan. Sources claim that Khan wanted to enter the media business to project his influence in society.
After Khan took over the daily, he made various changes to the newspaper including increasing the page numbers and making it fully coloured with attractive subscription schemes. He also shifted the newspaper's office from Infantry Road to a much bigger space which has been shut down by the SIT.
Former Union minister and the owner of Salar Daily (Urdu newspaper), Rehman Khan, who has been named by Khan in his latest video, said that Roshan Baig had taken Khan to his house soon after he took over The Siasat Daily. Rehman Khan claims that he has openly opposed IMA and was always suspicious about his activities, reports Bangalore Mirror.
Khan had also named Congress leader Mohammed Obedualla Sharieff, who is also the chief editor of Pasban (an Urdu daily), in his latest video and congratulated them on their success in harming IMA.
Khan was paying salaries which were above Urdu journalism industry standards, said a senior media professional tracking Urdu newspapers. An insider said that there were at least 70 editorial and non-editorial staff in Bengaluru and Hubballi offices, adds the report.
A grand mushaira (poetic symposium) was also organised by IMA and Baig at Bengaluru Palace in March to mark the 20th anniversary of The Siasat Daily's Bengaluru edition. During the event, Baig had said that Urdu newspapers played a constructive role in the progress of society, The Siasat Daily reported.
Rehman Khan and Obedualla Sharieff along with several other political big wigs were also present at the event sponsored by IMA.