Bribes paid to households provided by Arnab Goswami, claims Mumbai police

Bribes paid to households provided by Arnab Goswami, claims Mumbai police

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The Mumbai Police, which has named Republic TV cofounder and editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami as an accused in the television rating points (TRPs) manipulation case, claimed that bribes paid to households to rig the ratings were ‘provided’ by Goswami.

The police — in its over 1,900-page supplementary chargesheet filed Tuesday — has claimed to have recovered jewellery and other articles bought by accused former CEO of BARC Partho Dasgupta with the money allegedly paid by Goswami. This was to ensure that his channels are at the top spot.

An email sent to Republic TV remained unanswered till press time.

“Households who were bribed by accused Ghanshyam Singh to watch Republic TV and Republic Bharat, the money for the same was paid by Goswami,” says the chargesheet, reviewed by ET. Singh is the assistant vice-president (distribution) of ARG Outlier Media Pvt Ltd, which owns Republic TV. He was arrested in October last year in connection with the case.

The police have recorded the statement of Times Now officials who have claimed that between 2017 and 2018 when Dasgupta was at the helm, their channel incurred a loss of ₹431 crore. “The investigation has revealed that during the said corresponding period Times Now did incur losses and Goswami’s channel incurred gains,” the chargesheet added.

Times Now wasn’t immediately available for a comment.

The chargesheet also stated that Goswami, during his questioning, accepted the accuracy of the WhatsApp chats with Dasgupta. “In these chats (between December 26, 2020, and December 28, 2020) Dasgupta shared confidential information of his company (BARC) with Goswami that benefited his company,” the chargesheet stated.

The police claimed that its investigation has also revealed that NBA had written to TRAI on the alleged dual LAN (local channel number) issues.

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