THE MUMBAI crime branch on Tuesday made the 12th arrest in the Television Rating Points (TRP) scam and the first arrest of a person linked to the Republic News Network. Ghanshyam Singh (44) was arrested from his Thane residence early Tuesday morning and was produced before court that remanded him in police custody.
As per the remand report, during the questioning of Abhishek Kolawde, who was earlier arrested in the case, it came to light that it was Singh, Republic TV’s distribution head, who allegedly paid Rs 15 lakh to him at the residence of one Ashish Chaudhary, arrested earlier in the case.
The police said in the remand report that the money had been paid between January 2020 and July 2020 for increasing the TRP of Republic. Some of the payment was also made through hawala operators, the remand stated.
The remand report added that the money was then shared with others who were in charge of installing BAR-o-meters at houses based on which TRP’s are calculated. The police said they found Rs 11.72 lakh at the residence of Kolawde.
The remand report has identified wanted accused in the case as Republic channel owner and people concerned, News Nation and people concerned, Mahamovie channel owner and people concerned among others.
Republic in a statement said, “Ghanshyam Singh has cooperated throughout and answered all questions of the police to the best of his knowledge and ability. Ghanshyam has personally been through over 40 hours of semi-custodial interrogation, and his current detention crafts a new low in the highhanded tactics of the law and order machinery in the state of Maharashtra which is functioning unchecked.”
The Mumbai police case is that some channels like Republic had been paying to illegally boost their TRP’s and thus earned profits illegally by getting higher rates for advertisements they earned due to high TRP’s.
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