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Minutes of the meeting of the disciplinary committee of the Yachting Association of India on 21st Jan 08 at the Gybe Mark, Indian Naval Watermanship Training Centre, Mumbai to hear Lt Col G Dutta (Retd) in person, as directed by the Hon'ble High Court of Delhi. This refers to the directions of Hon’ble Mr Justice S Ravindra Bhat of High Court of Delhi vide order No. WP(C) 9427/2007 and CM No. 17752/07 dated 17 Dec 07


So today Dharmesh Thakker who was mentioned in the notice by the solicitors of Lt Col (retd) Gautam Dutta and Anju Dutta on my post has sent me a notice complaining about defamation of him by them. This is his side of things.


Notice for posting defamatory references

Dear Ms Vidyut Kale,

It has been brought to my attention that a legal notice posted on your blog AamJanata ( sent by the legal advisors and counsels of Lt Col (rtd) Gautam Dutta and Anju Dutta makes defamatory references against me.

The legal notice posted on your blog Aam Janata is defamatory with malafide intentions to tarnish my name and strong arm tactics to silence me from exposing their illegal activities. They are by no means the only people I expose and their claim that this as a deliberate targeting is false. As an journalist and RTI activist, I have a keen interest in exposing corruption.

The notice mentions my name thrice blaming me for legal action by authorities on their yacht/boat operations. The wild and baseless allegations are an attempt to discredit and defame me. I would like to inform you that even if a whistle blower does alert authorities, the authorities do not arrest or detain anyone just because someone sent a tip or whatever way the information is conveyed. If nothing illegal is found – they cannot do anything. To blame me for legal actions against their business or themselves, is absurd.

Request and demand to give equal prominence to my notice as you have published theirs. As a supporter of Freedom of Speech, I do not demand that their defamatory words about me be removed, but my response should also be visible prominently

I have built my reputation and career over 14 years of unbiased reporting without fear and favor. The numerous testimonials from media legends speaks about my work and credibility.

Riz Khan

Riz hired you as a Freelance Journalist in 2005 and hired you more than once

Top qualities: Personable, Expert, Good Value

“Dharmesh is passionate about getting results and has a remarkable contact base in Mumbai and other parts of India. He is genuinely dedicated and persistent.” October 5, 2009

Ram Ramgopal

Ram hired you as a Freelance Producer in 2003 and hired you more than once

Top qualities: Personable, High Integrity, Creative

“I have worked with Dharmesh Thakkar on several occasions when he helped as a producer on the ground in Mumbai. I have always found he is full of story ideas and suggests creative treatments for spot news and investigative pieces. Furthermore, he knows what kind of stories will appeal to an international audience. His rolodex is impressive, and he's helped set up interviews and shoots on short notice -- whether it's for entertainment, crime or business stories. Dharmesh is very quick when it comes to passing on information, but he also values accuracy. In fact, it's that aspect that has impressed me the most: his editorial fidelity. He has often helped us trump even Indian networks on getting out accurate (and timely) reports.I wholeheartedly recommend Dharmesh for any field producing/assignment desk job.” October 6, 2009


Ben Barnier

, Journalist - since June 2006, ABC News (business partner)
was with another company when working with you

“Dharmesh was instrumental in helping our ABC News team cover features in Mumbai. He was helpful, knowledgeable and witty. Thanks to his contribution we put together a colorful profile of an elderly Mumbai Bollywood Painter.” November 29, 2009


Adam Woods

Adam hired you as a General Contractor in 2008

Top qualities: Great Results, Expert, On Time

“Dharmesh co-ordinated a complicated TV commercial shoot for me shooting in Mumbai, helping arrange high-level permissions to shoot in airport, and other sensitive areas, and had the contacts on the ground to ensure the shoot went very smoothly.” October 13, 2010

James Wright

, Executive Producer, Al Jazeera English (colleague)
worked directly with you

“Darmesh worked with our team on a freelance basis while we were covering stories in Mumbai. Darmesh has great contacts and was pro-active in coordinating with us to get us top guests for the show. It was a real asset to have a Mumbai "insider" working with us and we were able to accomplish things we wouldn't have been able to without his support” October 30, 2009

Sohail (So) Rahman

Sohail (So) hired you as a Writer/Editor in 2006 and hired you more than once

Top qualities: Great Results, Personable, Expert

“Dharmesh has acted as a fixer for my shoots in the Maharashtra state in India. Incredibly knowledgeable and always on time he is a very enthusiastic producer who is consistently on top of the story and the elements required for it. It also helps that he's a nice guy with good sense of fun especially when this industry can be stressful.” May 15, 2012



Yogesh Damle

, Correspondent, Asst. Output editor, NDTV (colleague)
worked with you

“Though Dharmesh and I worked for different channels within the organisation, Dharmesh's prowess has consistently been a subject of admiration. His source-building, news sense and enterprise are exemplary attributes. His numerous exclusives testify his mettle.” January 20, 2010




Prasad Ramamurthy

, Sr News Editor, NDTV (colleague)


managed you

“Dharmesh was part of the reporter pool that I managed. He was one of our lead crime reporters and did his job with great responsibility and sincerity. He is enthusiastic and generates ideas beyond the scope of his own work. I was impressed by his ability to source information, often days ahead of the competition. Dharmesh will be an asset to any organisation he works with" Regards, Prasad January 8, 2010




Ruhi Khan

, Principal Correspondent, NDTV (colleague)
worked directly with you

“It was great fun to work with Dharmesh at NDTV. He has a good news sense and incredible contacts in diverse fields, which he is always willing to share with others. He was also fantastic with fixing up shoots/bytes in pace with the demands of TV news reporting. I’m sure he would excel in a journalist/consulting role and be an asset to any organisation.” May 2, 2012

Rajeev Dikshit

, HOD operations, Associated Broadcasting Company Pvt. Ltd (colleague)
worked with you

“I have had a great time working with Dharmesh at TV 9 Mumbai; he is always on the move, hyper active, & full of energy. He is a focused person, always willing to take responsibility.Dharmesh is a dedicated and very organized worker. He is a very capable media professional with keen eye on detail. I wish him all the best for the future.” April 11, 2010

Ishan Choudhary

, Producer-Input, Associated Broadcasting Company Pvt. Ltd (colleague)
worked directly with you

“It is tough to find easy going seniors, especially when you join a new environment. For his experience, Dharmesh bhai is very down to earth and an extremely resourceful and multi-faceted professional. He does not hesitate to share information which usually other journalists try to pass off as exclusive or breaking and is a very accessible senior. He is an efficient man manager and has a knack of accessing information at first go other than anyone else. It is a good learning experience to be working alongside him.” May 18, 2011--


(Dharmesh Thakker)


Dharmesh Thakker mentioned in this notice has objected to the defamatory references and allegations to him in this notice. You may read his notice on this notice here.

Today, I received a letter from Mr. Uttam Hathi of Brus Chambers Advocates and Solicitors acting on behalf of and under the instructions of Lt Col (Retd) Gautama Dutta and Anju Dutta in response to the post about the party on Belvedere. Please note that my posts are about Lt Col (retd) Gautam Dutta.

Their letter is as follows:



Update 2: I received a takedown notice for this post as per the much hated IT Rules today 16-05-2012 at 4:15pm. This is a real take down notice by the solicitors of the Duttas, not Operation Test Drive. Considering that the motion for annuling the IT Rules is being moved in the Rajya Sabha by Sri. P. Rajeeve tomorrow, and I have 36 hours to take the post down, I am letting this remain on the hope that there is a strong indication of the IT Rules being annulled. If that doesn't happen, I will be taking this down at some point before 36 hours from 4:15pm today are up. This is precisely the problem with IT Rules - the arbitrary power to censor or be taken by rich people to the LAWndry. I have to do it, I don't have to like it. images below are the takedown notice (NOT the one in next update..

Update 1: This post contains edits based on the letter by Lt Col Gautama Dutta and Anju Dutta's legal representative.

This post has been deleted.