Headlines October 11, 2020
Republic TV TRP scam update
Republic TV CFO Shiva Subramaniyam Sundaram, who was to appear before the Mumbai Police over allegations the news channel paid people to watch its programmes to increase ratings and earn more ad revenue did not appear before the police.
He said he had filed a petition with the Supreme Court challenging Mumbai Police’s summons.
This petition is “likely to be listed soon” and Mumbai Police is therefore “requested not to proceed with any further investigation in so far as Republic TV and its employees are concerned”, a statement issued Saturday afternoon said.
On Thursday BARC (Broadcast Audience Research Council) – an agency that tracks television viewership – alleged the numbers were being faked by certain channels.
Republic TV is the biggest name to have emerged from early inquiries, with viewers testifying they were paid to keep the channel on even when they were not watching. The two other channels named in early investigations are local channels Fakt Marathi and Box Cinema.
The police intend to carry out a “forensic audit” of Republic TV’s accounts, which could be frozen if it was established that the channel pocketed extra advertising money using rigged ratings.
Republic TV has strongly refuted the allegations. Republic TV’s Arnab Goswami has said that he would sue Param Bir Singh over the allegations.