The former CEO of Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) India, Partho Dasgupta, has submitted a handwritten statement to Mumbai Police that he received 12,000 dollars from Republic TV Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami for two separate holidays and a total of Rs 40 lakh over three years, in return for manipulating ratings in favour of the news channel, according to the supplementary chargesheet filed in the TRP scam case.
The 3,600-page supplementary chargesheet, also includes a BARC forensic audit report, WhatsApp chats purportedly between Dasgupta and Goswami, and statements of 59 persons, including former council employees and cable operators.
The audit report names several news channels, including Republic, Times Now and Aaj Tak. It lists instances of alleged manipulation as well as “pre-fixing” of ratings by BARC’s top executives.
An expert says, why Arnab has to do all this, when there is quality news in the TV channel, all will come to view and listen, it brings serious negativity on the channel . Whereas, there is no prove established if the BJP lead government has done any undue favour to neither the TV channel nor Arnab Goswami. However, the principal opposition congress party spokesperson says on the direct involvement of the BJP leadership in leaking the news to the TV channel.
According to the second chargesheet, Dasgupta’s statement was recorded in the office of the Crime Intelligence Unit on December 27, 2020, at 5.15 pm, in the presence of two witnesses.
Dasgupta’s statement reads: “I have known Arnab Goswami since 2004. We used to work together in Times Now. I joined BARC as CEO in 2013. Arnab Goswami launched Republic in 2017. Even before launching Republic TV he would talk to me about plans for the launch and indirectly hint at helping him to get good ratings to his channel. Goswami knew very well that I know how the TRP system works. He also alluded to helping me out in the future.” as per Indian Express.