MUMBAI: In a supplementary chargesheet filed by Mumbai Police, WhatsApp conversations between a pro-government news anchor, Arnab Goswami and the former CEO of Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC), Partho Dasgupta, have been released.
The 512-page document has revealed friendly conversations between the two, as both have shared sensitive and classified information with each other while discussing politicians, journalists, news networks, and the TRP systems.
The chats have disclosed that the former chief of TV ratings measurement agency has been asked to provide confidential TV viewership data in order to be manipulated to get maximum ratings for Goswami’s Republic TV while downsizing its competitors.
According to The Hindu’s report: “There are also many instances in the transcripts that show Mr. Goswami boasting about his proximity to the “PMO” and the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting; he details his visits to Delhi to meet various ministers. There is another instance where he says that ‘all the ministers are with us’.”
The documents also reveal BARC-Republic TV’s combined lobbying efforts with top ministers to do propaganda in the favor of BJP-led government.
“In other conversations, Mr. Goswami also complains about other news channels getting better ratings than his (Republic TV) and Mr. Dasgupta assures him that necessary steps will be taken to ‘clean the data’,” the report added.
During a conversation, BARC CEO Pratho Dasgupta has asked Goswami to get him a job in India’s PM Office.
The Mumbai police have retrieved the chats from Dasgupta’s phone who is being investigated under the police’s custody.
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