New Delhi: Journalist Arnab Goswami’s soon-to-be launched news channel Republic TV has been served a legal notice by his former employer The Times Group over use of the phrase “nation wants to know".
The Times Group runs the English language news channels Times Now and ET Now and publishes The Times of India and The Economic Times newspapers.
In a three-minute audio clip posted on YouTube, Goswami claimed that he has been served with yet another legal threat and this time for using the aforementioned phrase.
“A media group has sent me a six-page letter threatening me with imprisonment if I ever use the phrase ‘Nation wants to know’. They say that they own the phrase," said Goswami, in the clip without naming the media group.
HT Media Ltd, the publisher of Mint and Hindustan Times, competes with The Times Group in some markets.
Goswami was using the catch phrase ‘Nation wants to know’ on his popular prime time show Newshour on Times Now till he quit the company on 1 November 2016. He was the president and editor-in-chief of news channels Times Now and ET Now.
In the YouTube clip, Goswami further said that the threat of imprisonment will not deter him and that he has been using the phrase for the last 20 years throughout his reporting career.
“ARG Outliers had filed for trademark for these and similar phrases which were already filed for and extensively used for years by Times Now. We have responded with a standard caution notice. He (Arnab) is just trying to gain soundbytes from it," said a spokesperson for the Times Network, when contacted for comments.
Republic is a part of a company called ARG Outlier Media Pvt. Ltd, of which Rajya Sabha MP Rajeev Chandrasekhar is the biggest investor.
Goswami’s Republic made its social media debut on 7 January with a Facebook page and a Twitter handle @republicworld. The company has received the regulatory nod from the information and broadcasting ministry and is expected to launch the news channel soon.