Two editors of Republic TV have been summoned by Mumbai Police in connection with a probe into the alleged manipulation of Television Rating Points (TRP) by three channels.
Executive Editor Niranjan Narayanaswamy and Senior Executive Editor Abhishek Kapoor were summoned by the police on Tuesday, according to NDTV. They have been asked to appear before Crime Intelligence Unit (CIU) on Wednesday,
On 10 October, Republic TV had aired a document which purportedly belonged to Hansa Research Group and “there are reasonable grounds to believe that the summoned persons are acquainted with certain facts and circumstances of the document and same is required to be ascertained from them,” the summons said, according to PTI.
The CIU on Tuesday recorded statements of Pravin Nizar and Nitin Deokar of Hansa agency.
In a statement, Republic said that Mumbai police chief Param Bir Singh has “crossed all limits in his continued desperate witch-hunt against Republic to expose his malicious agenda against a free press.”
The channel added that it will not reveal its source. “For the Mumbai Police to use its state machinery to hunt down independent journalists and use its systems of intimidation will not work with the team at Republic Media Network.”
The investigation into ratings manipulation is based on a complaint by Hansa, Singh had said last week.
In a press conference last week, the Mumbai Police claimed to have busted a TRP manipulation racket involving Republic TV and two Marathi channels — Box Cinema and Fakt Marathi.
A police official told PTI that the Special Investigation Team of the Crime Branch also visited the office of BARC and made enquiries.
(With PTI inputs)