Mumbai, October 8, 2020: Mumbai Police has brought a huge TRP scam to light. It has been revealed in the investigation carried so far that certain tv channels such as ‘Republic TV’, Fakt Marathi, Box Cinema etc have been indulged in such malpractices. It was revealed by Mumbai Police Commissioner Parambir Singh during a press conference.
The Detection Crime Branch have busted a major racket which is fraudulently involved in manipulating Television Rating Points (TRP). Two persons are arrested in this regard. BARC is an organization which functions under the governance of Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) and Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI). It claims that it powers 332000 crores Indian tv ad industry by providing sharp insights. It has installed approximately 30000 barometers in various parts of India which monitor various programs and based on the statistical metrics, BARC awards ratings to various tv channels. Based on these ratings, advertisers pay for their advertisers.
According to police, manipulated TRP ratings adversely result in miscalculated targeted audience for the advertisers. This further results in losses of hundreds of crores of rupees because of such manipulations and fake statistics of TRP. On a complaint, the Crime Branch nabbed a person from Malad. In the preliminary inquiry, he revealed that he had been working for a company which is a part of Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC).
“One of the arrested accused person and some of the wanted accused persons were employees of Hansa Research Group Pvt Ltd and they have misused the confidential data which had been entrusted to them. It has been done for wrongful gains of various tv channels which had resulted in the wrongful loss to various advertisers and their agencies. Preliminary investigations also revealed that these accused persons have manipulated the sampling metering services by inducing the barometer users by paying them periodically to watch particular tv channels. Many of the people in whose homes these barometers have been installed have accepted that they have been monetarily beneficial for keeping their TV sets on even if they didn’t watch”, police said.
An offence has been registered at Kandivali Police Station in this regard. The arrested accused persons were produced before the ACMM court, where they have been remanded to Crime Branch custody till 9th October ACP Shashank Sandbhor is the Chief Investigating Officer of the case assisted by API Sachin Waze and his team of the C.L.U. under the guidance of Jt CP Crime Milind Bharambe, DCP Detection Nandkumar Thakur, DCP Akbar Pathan. All-out efforts are being made to trace the roots of the matter. Several teams have been sent in various states across India to nab the absconding accused persons. Certain witnesses have come forward stating that they were induced by the arrested accused persons and their accomplices for a monthly monetary consideration, police said.