'NDTV not taken over by Ajay Singh; reports baseless'

Isaac Cain
September 23, 2017

SpiceJet's co-founder Ajay Singh is reportedly taking over NDTV as CBI probe has been ordered for its founders, Prannoy Roy, Radhika Roy and promoter firm RRPR Holding Pvt Ltd. on charges of hiding a share transaction, The Indian Express reported. "With reference to your letter seeking clarification on the news item appearing on www.moneycontrol.com, we wish to inform you that the promoters of the Company have not entered into any agreement for sale of their stake in the Company to any person", NDTV said in a clarification to the stock exchanges.

According to a report by The Indian Express, the owner and co-founder of SpiceJet Ajay Singh has bought a majority stake in news channel NDTV.

The CBI conducted searches in Roy's residence on June 5, where NDTV stood up for their owners and called the raids a "blatant attack on the freedom of the press", in a statement.

Given this turbulent relationship between the Modi sarkar and the channel, its promoters and anchors, and the fact that a majority of the mainstream news channels are now viewed as those that look at the Centre "more favourably", it had often been speculated in the media that it was only a matter of time before NDTV have to pick one of at least four options.

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India's oldest English television news broadcaster NDTV officially denied that it has been sold to Ajay Singh, the promoter of SpiceJet. The total deal is being valued at around Rs 600 crore.

The chairman and managing director for SpiceJet, Ajay Singh, acquired SpiceJet in January 2015, after which he turned around the fate of SpiceJet. Singh played a role in 2014 Lok Sabha campaign of the BJP as part of the core advertising/campaigning team. In his two-and-a-half year stint there, the bus fleet was reported to have risen to 6000 from 300. In 2010, Kalanithi Maran had taken control of SpiceJet by buying stakes from the Kanshagra family and Wilbur Ross.

An alumnus of Delhi's St. Columba's school, Singh is a graduate of IIT Delhi, an MBA from Cornell University and a Bachelor's degree in Law (LLB) from Law Faculty, University of Delhi.

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