TRP Scam: No Coercive Action Against Arnab Goswami Till 15 Jan

The Mumbai Police told the Bombay HC that “some evidence” was found against Republic TV and Arnab Goswami.

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The Bombay High Court on Wednesday, 6 January said it will not take any coercive action against Republic TV editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami and other employees of ARG Outlier Media Pvt Ltd until the next hearing that will take place on 15 January as reported by The Indian Express.

Kapil Sibal, senior advocate for the state government, told the court that due to the adjournment sought by Republic TV’s lawyer due to family medical emergency, it was agreeing to continue the assurance, as reported by The Indian Express.

The Mumbai Police told the Bombay High Court that it had found “some evidence” against Republic TV and its editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami in the TRP Scam. Sibal further added that it would not be willing to continue the assurance during the next hearing.


"We (Mumbai Police) have found evidence on record through investigation with BARC (Broadcast Audience Research Council) against Republic TV and Arnab Goswami. Milords may record my statement that I (police) do not wish to continue my statement. I (Police) have agreed (not to take any coercive action against the accused) because of this extreme emergency," Mr Sibal was quotes as saying as reported The Indian Express.

Sibal also told the court that the police will submit a status report relating to the probe on the next date of the hearing.

A plea by the TV channel relating to quashing the FIR was being heard by a division bench of Justice SS Shinde and Justice MS Karnik.

As per The Indian Express, the counsel for ARG Outlier and Goswami informed the court last month that they were apprehensive of the Mumbai Police arresting Goswami and other employees. Hence an interim relief was sought which restrains the police from making any arrests till the next hearing.

Advocate Niranjan Mundargi on Wednesday sought more time on behalf of counsel Ashok Mundargi who had to deal with a medical emergency in the family.

The alleged fake TRP scam was unearthed last year after a complaint was filed by an executive of a BARC-affiliated research agency, alleging that the viewership data was manipulated by some of these channels through contractors associated with the agency.

The modus operandi saw these contractors and other persons making fixed monthly payments to the BARC-empanelled families to view only certain channels/programmes – neither the agency nor BARC were aware of this till their internal audits started throwing up irregularities.

(With inputs from The Indian Express)

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