Committee on TRP measurement submits report to MIB

The committee was constituted shortly after the TRP manipulation racket was unearthed.

NEW DELHI: The committee formed by the ministry of information and broadcasting (MIB) to review TV viewership and measurement, led by Prasar Bharati CEO Shashi Shekhar Vempati, has shared its report today. The information was shared by minister of information and broadcasting Prakash Javadekar in a press meet today. 

The findings of the report are yet to be disclosed to the public, however, Javadekar stated that the ministry is quite happy with the good work done by the committee. The ministry will now review the report before sharing it with the Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC). Further action would be taken only after studying the detailed report, adding that such an arrangement would be made that there is no scope for tampering with the TRPs.

Javadekar said, “The whole purpose of this exercise is to instate more transparency in the measurement ecosystem. Today, TRP transparency is based on 55,000 meters. Its base should increase so that there is no room left for manipulation.” 

He added, “After consulting with everyone, it will be given to TRP agency BARC because the government has the right to give some guidelines and directions. I am hopeful that all the related agencies will welcome this.”

The committee was constituted by the MIB on 4 November 2020 after Mumbai police uncovered an alleged TRP manipulation racket active in the city. While constituting the committee, the ministry had said there is a need to take a fresh look at the rating guidelines, particularly keeping in view the recent recommendations of TRAI, technological advancements or interventions to address the system and for further strengthening of the procedures for a credible and transparent rating system.

Authorities are currently in the process of investigating the TRP manipulation case and whether the accused rigged viewership ratings in favour of certain players. Republic TV, along with two other channels – Fakt Marathi and Box Cinema – were charged with giving handouts to households with ratings meters installed, in exchange for keeping their channels on for extended periods of time. In response to the furore caused by this incident, BARC suspended weekly data for news channels for three months.

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