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"Arnab Goswami Paid Lakhs Of Rupees To Former BARC CEO To Boost TRPs": Mumbai Police

According to the remand report submitted by the Mumbai police, Goswami had met the BARC CEO on several occasions and gave him the amount in cash, and once in US dollars as well.

Republic Media Network owner Arnab Goswami paid 'lakhs of rupees' to former CEO of Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC), Partho Dasgupta to 'increase' the TRP of Republic Bharat Hindi and Republic TV English news channel, the Mumbai police told a court on Monday.

This is the first time the police has mentioned Goswami's role in the TRP scam. The remand report mentions 'Republic owners', and does not specifically mention Goswami's name, The Indian Express reported.

According to the report, Goswami paid Dasgupta lakhs of rupees on several occasions, which he further used to purchase jewellery and other valuables, including Tag Heuer watch worth ₹1 lakh, precious stones worth ₹2.22 lakh. All the items were seized from Dasgupta's residence.

Speaking to the media, Assistant Police Inspector Sachin Vaze said that Dasgupta, during the interrogation revealed that Goswami had met him at least three times on several occasions, in different hotels and gave him the amount in cash, once in US dollars as well.

Both of them had worked together at TimesNow earlier.

The department has also alleged Dasgupta to be the main pivot, who fudged viewership numbers and data for financial benefits. They have also requested the court to extend his custody to investigate further into the matter.

In October, the Mumbai Police had registered an FIR alleging the fudging of TRPs by some TV channels. The investigation revealed names of three channels - Republic TV, Box Cinemas and Fakt Marathi. The following month, the police filed a chargesheet against 12 persons involved in tampering with the 'BAR-o-meters' installed at homes to measure the TRPs.

The channels allegedly paid the homes that had BAR-o-meters to keep their TVs on with the specified channels even when no one was watching.

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