Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh on Thursday spoke solely to Editor-In-Chief and Chairman, India TV, Rajat Sharma on TRP (Television Ratings Points) manipulation scandal. Earlier within the day, in a presser addressed by Mumbai Police, it named three channels together with Republic TV alleging that they had been concerned in TRP manipulation.
Speaking to Editor-In-Chief and Chairman, India TV, Rajat Sharma on Aaj Ki Baat, Mumbai Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh mentioned, “We had received a complaint from Hansa Research Group Pvt Ltd that works for BARC for maintenance equipment and measuring TRPs. They complained that some of their ex-employees had stolen their confidential data that is used to measure TRP, at what all places these TRP reading meters were installed… Hansa complained that the ex-employees have stolen this data and were using it together with some channels, they were trying to manipulate TRPs and showing increased TRPs.”
Further talking on this, Mumbai prime cop mentioned, “when TRP increases, so does advertising revenue due to which advertisers lose, other channels also lose and this is the complaint that Hansa made to us.”
Mumbai prime cop continued and mentioned, “On the basis of their complaint, we registered a case under criminal breach of trust IPC section 409 and cheating IPC section 420, started our investigation and arrested two former employees of Hansa. We recovered some money from them and we also got to know that they were using this data, and trying to manipulate TRPs.”
Param Bir Singh mentioned that in their investigation, two small channels identify surfaced and that the homeowners of each these channels have been arrested. “… and the third big name that surfaced was of Republic TV and that they were trying to manipulate TRP by aligning with Republic TV. And to increase the TRP, some suspicious trends were noticed by BARC in the Republic TV’s viewership and gave names of some suspicious households where some suspicious viewership was witnessed…”
“Further, we tried tracing those members of suspicious households were suspicious viewership was being witnessed and they confirmed that they were given money to keep switch on a specific television… irrespective of whether they were watching or not watching TV… or whether they knew English or not… such means were being used to increase the TRP…”
Param Bir Singh additionally added, “if there is even a minute difference in a channel’s TRP then it affects advertising revenue in crores, leads to loss for advertisers, and other channels…”
Responding to how this info was out that the place all these panel houses had been positioned given the truth that that is confidential info, Param Bir Singh mentioned, “As we said that ex-employees of Hansa had the list of where all these TRP measuring metres were installed, they were selling this data to TV channels, they were indulging in TRP manipulation… so some channels were getting this information that where all these barometers were installed.”
The Mumbai prime cop mentioned that the additional investigation on for a way lengthy was this manipulation was being accomplished is underway, up to now we now have obtained info for a restricted interval… after evaluation of suspicious, unnatural trending that was monitored. The prime cop additionally added that there are names of another channels that can even be examined and motion might be taken in accordance with the proof towards anybody whosoever.
Speaking on Republic TV’s declare that BARC grievance doesn’t point out its identify, Mumbai Police Commissioner mentioned, “BARC has given us report on suspicious trending, Republic Television, suspicious households, who were questioned by Mumbai Police and they confirmed that they were given money to watch Republic TV, their statements have been recorded and on the basis of all these complaints… further action whether be it summoning of channels officials or any other action, will be taken based on evidence.”
Responding to Republic TV’s declare that since they questioned Mumbai Police on Sushant Singh Rajput’s case and that is why they had been being focused or questioned, Mumbai prime cop mentioned, “They never asked me a question, they would have raised questions, our investigation was upheld by Supreme Court… the reports such as hospital or forensic, were approved by AIIMS, this has also surfaced.. also every agency in the country approved our report… so without even knowing our investigation or reports, if people with some vested interests will try to malign or discredit our investigation… but we are not running any campaign, we will act on the evidence that will surface…”
On being requested that Republic TV has mentioned it should proceed their investigation on Palghar case or Sushant Singh Rajput’s dying case, Mumbai Police Commissioner mentioned, “we have not stopped them from doing their work… whatever their conscious (Zameer) permits them, they can run their campaign, run any program, we have no objection to it …”
Responding to Republic TV’s declare that on Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray’s route, Mumbai Police has threatened to close down Republic Channel, Param Bir Singh mentioned, “We received a complaint from BARC, an agency named Hansa on BARC’s behalf have registered complaint… we have no control on BARC and what Mumbai Police has to investigate or not, this does not come from the government… we are a professional agency.. and we take action on the basis of complaints and I assure all that in this case too, we will continue our professional investigation… we haven’t targeted anyone and nor we will do it. “
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