Television

TRP scam: In bail plea, Partho Dasgupta claims no advertiser was deceived

The matter has been adjourned to 15 January.

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NEW DELHI: While seeking bail from a Mumbai sessions court in the alleged TRP scam case, former Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) CEO Partho Dasgupta’s counsel claimed that no advertiser has been deceived by him. The offence of cheating was added only to include a non-bailable offence, and that there was no evidence to show that Dasgupta cheated or induced any person.

The actual stakeholders who are supposed to be affected by the alleged TRP scam are actually the advertisers and media houses who are not the complainants, advocate Shardul Singh submitted.

“No advertiser has come forward to say that it has been so deceived. The prosecution had ample time since lodging of FIR to verify this position, however it did not do so, because there is no advertiser who is deceived,” he argued.

The lawyer also mentioned that the jewellery and other articles recovered from the bank lockers of Dasgupta and his family were purchased much before the launch of Republic TV. He also questioned why Goswami has not been named in the FIR or chargesheet and pointed out that former COO of BARC Romil Ramgarhia was also released on bail despite being in an equally important position in the agency.

He further submitted that all electronics belonging to Dasgupta, which he allegedly used during his tenure as CEO, were already seized by the police, and all financial transactions and statements were also made available to them for investigation. Thus, there was no further requirement of his custody in jail.

Dasgupta was arrested on 24 December by the Mumbai police for his alleged involvement in the TRP manipulation racket. He was in police custody till 31 December, after which he was remanded to judicial custody for two weeks. The matter of Dasgupta’s bail plea has now been adjourned to 15 January. 

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