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इंडियन आवाज़     29 Oct 2020 10:03:08      انڈین آواز

TRP SCAM:’People are Paid to watch Republic TV’, 3 Channels in Dock, says Mumbai Police

Republic TV Among 3 Channels Being Probed For TRP Manipulation

WEB DESK / AGENCIES

Mumbai Police today made a startling revelation of private channels tampering with Television Rating Points (TRP) to gain fake TRPs. Talking to the media Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh said three private channels including Republic TV have been found to tamper with TRP ratings.

Singh said four persons including an ex employee of the research agency have been arrested. Police Chief said the top officials of the channel would be summoned for questioning. The Commissioner said channels have manipulated the viewership report from the TRP meters installed at various places to earn false rating points. He said this is an offence under the law as the channels with false augmented TRP ratings lured advertisers to gain commercial bookings at higher rates. Singh said investigation is on to find out if more channels are also involved in the crime.

The officers claimed that even in uneducated homes, some English news channels remained switched on.

“TV advertising industry is worth 30,000-40,000 crore. The rates are decided on the basis of TRP. Even if minor changes are made in TRP, it affects advertising,” he said.

The Detection Crime Branch of Mumbai police, which unearthed the TRP racket, has arrested owners of two Marathi channels, for manipulating viewership ratings, an official said.

TRP is a tool to judge which TV programmes are viewed the most and also indicates the viewers’ choice and popularity of a particular channel.

Singh told reporters that a national TV news channel, facing flak over its attack on Mumbai police and Maharashtra government in the Sushant Singh Rajput death case, was also involved in the TRP racket.

This national news channel is also involved in the TRP racket and persons responsible for this will also be arrested, whether one is director, promoter or any other employee of the channel, the police commissioner said. Bank accounts of these channels are also being probed and people responsible for the TRP racket are being summoned by police for further investigation in the case, he said.

BARC (Broadcast Audience Research Council) said that it appreciates the efforts of the Mumbai Police and will provide the support asked of it. “As in all our previous cases of suspected panel homes intrusions, BARC India continues to follow its established vigilance and disciplinary guidelines. BARC remains steadfastly true to its purpose to accurately and faithfully report What India Watches,” said BARC India spokesperson.

Reacting to the development, Republic TV editor-in-chief Arnab Goswani, “Param Bir Singh has made false allegations against Republic TV because we have questioned him in the Sushant Singh Rajput case investigation. Republic TV will file a criminal defamation case against him.”

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