Ahead of the Bombay High Court hearing in the alleged fake TRP (television rating point) scam, the Enforcement Directorate (ED), which is investigating a money laundering case pertaining to TRP rigging, on Thursday questioned two officers of ratings agency Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) for over five hours.
Earlier this week, the ED questioned the chief financial officer (CFO) of India Today Group for over seven hours in the case. Sources said the India Today CFO was called on the basis of the original complaint filed in the fake TRP case with the Mumbai Police and raw data obtained by the ED from BARC for the alleged period under examination.
The ED, sources said, has called the CFO again for questioning as the agency is not satisfied with the answers given by the official.
So far, the agency has recorded statements of all the accused mentioned in the FIR filed by Mumbai Police.
The scam came to light last year when BARC lodged a complaint through Hansa Research Group, alleging that certain television channels were rigging TRP numbers.
Police alleged that some channels were paying bribe to fraudulently boost TRP, so as to increase advertising revenue.
It was also alleged that families, in whose homes meters were installed to collect data on viewership, were being bribed to tune into a particular channel. The Mumbai Police has, so far, arrested 13 people in connection with the case, including the former COO of BARC.
The TRP is important as advertising revenue of channels depends on it.
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