Memorandum submitted by Lewis Silkin Solicitors
We act for and are instructed by Mr Mihir Bose
the well known sports journalist for The Daily Telegraph.
We refer to the meeting of the Culture Media
and Sport Committee which is being held at the House of Commons
over the past few weeks. In particular we refer to the examination
of Mr Ken Bates, Chairman of Chelsea, which took place on 1 March
During the course of his examination Mr Bates
is reported to have said:
"As I have said already, I do not think
the Government should have interfered in the first place; they
should have been on the sidelines cheering us on and we could
have got the project done. We have had 19 months I know
she will be here in due course to give her point of viewand
this has been consistently undermined and she has been feeding
it to the press all the time. It is known that she has been using
the conduit to feed it to the press based totally on ignorance
and unfortunately some members of the press, and Mihir Bose is
an extreme example, have just printed what she has told them without
any checking of the facts at all."
The allegation that our client is prepared to
prostitute his journalistic integrity in order to simply act as
a conduit for a Minister of the Government is an outrageous and
serious allegation. In addition, there is a second allegation
made against Mr Bose that he has published information provided
by the Government Minister without bothering to check any of the
facts. Again, this is a most serious allegation to levy against
an experienced journalist.
There is of course no truth whatsoever in any
of these allegations.
Our client has already been the subject of vilification
by Mr Bates in articles published by him in The Sunday People,
particularly in The Sunday People of 29 October 2000 when
similar allegations were made against our client, and also in
correspondence sent to our client's sports editor. In both instances
we have written and sought apologies and are advising our client
as to his rights in this regard.
Our immediate concern on behalf of our client
is that he has the opportunity to respond to these allegations
made by Mr Bates prior to the Culture, Media and Sport Committee
concluding the taking of evidence. We would be grateful if you
would please allow him to do so, personally. Should you not be
prepared to do so then we would hope you will communicate the
text of his rebuttal to such allegations, in which ever way you
felt appropriate, at one of the Committee's sittings and have
it incorporated in your published report.
Select Committees are known for their fairness
and thoroughness, and as Chairman of the Committee we are sure
you will be concerned to ensure that any individual who is gratuitously
attacked should be given the right to respond, and indeed to answer
any questions your Committee may wish to ask. Naturally, Mr Bose
understands that he should not use such an occasion, nor would
he wish to, to deal with other than rebutting the specific allegations
made to the Committee and we give an assurance on his behalf to
We look forward to hearing from you.