Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Sunday, Dec 19, 2004
Info-Tech - Internet
Marketing - Online Marketing
Baazee expresses shock; CEO remanded to judicial custody
New Delhi , Dec. 18
BAAZEE.COM, whose Chief Executive Officer, Mr Avnish Bajaj, was on Saturday remanded to judicial custody after the Delhi police arrested him in connection with the multi-media messaging scandal on Friday, has expressed shock and surprise over the development.
In a statement issued on Friday, Ms Deepa Thomas, Manager (Corporate Communications), said the company was shocked and outraged to hear about the arrest. "We have been working closely with the Delhi police and fully cooperating with them since they contacted us on December 9. In fact, Mr Bajaj went to Delhi from our Mumbai office to aid the police in every way," she said in the statement.
The statement further said that a seller had put up a prohibited item in contravention of the user agreement and that it was taken off the site as soon as Baazee.com was notified about it.
Explaining the working of Baazee.com, the statement also said thousands of items were listed on the site and they were all independent entries. They were not verified or authenticated by the site managers.
Earlier, Ravi Raj, a student of the Indian Institute of Technology (Kharagpur), who was the first to be arrested in the case, had told the police that he had posted the video clip for sale on the site on November 26. Over the next two days, eight persons bought the clipping online after which the deal was closed. The site managers had reportedly told the police that they had forgotten to close the particular window and that they had also warned Ravi to take the clip off the site.
However, police sources claimed that it was done only after a case was registered. A media report on December 6 had highlighted that sleazy material was openly on sale through the site, after which the case was registered.
The police have examined two of the buyers based in Delhi and decided not to take action against them as they had neither forwarded the clipping nor sold it to any other person. The other buyers, who are based outside Delhi, would be questioned in due course of time. A couple of buyers are reported to be from Bangalore.
Meanwhile, the police are yet to execute the warrant on the boy who had allegedly made the clipping and circulated it. A police officer claimed that the arrest warrant obtained by them from the court on Friday was not executed as they had to complete the legal formalities. The officer, however, dismissed as speculation reports that the boy had left the Capital to avoid the warrant being served on him. The police are also planning to question the students who received the video clip forwarded by the accused.
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