An accused in the TRP manipulation scam has allegedly confessed to have paid Rs 15 lakh to boost the viewership of Republic TV.
The Mumbai Crime branch, which is currently probing the scam, informed the magistrate court that Thane cable distributor Ashish Choudhary has admitted to have paid the sum every month through a co-accused to select households to boost the Arnab Goswami-led channel’s viewership figures.
According to a Times of India report, Choudhary, who owns Crystal Broadcast, also claimed to have received money from Hawala operators and has agreed to turn approver.
Cops made the disclosure in court while seeking Choudhary’s remand along with Abhishek Kolawade, who runs marketing firm Max Media.
Choudhary was arrested after his name cropped up while interrogating Kolawade.
The remand application said Kolawade received Rs 15 lakh from Choudhary every month. He allegedly distributed the money to other suspects, who in turn paid households where bar-o-meters were installed to keep their TV sets tuned into Republic TV for the maximum durations.
The police, however, did not elaborate on the Hawala payments saying a probe is on.
Kolawade has reportedly admitted to receiving money from Republic Bharat Hindi and Wow Music channel between 2017 and July 2020.
Mumbai police is currently probing the TRP manipulation scam involving Republic TV, Fakt Marathi, Box Cinema, News Nations, Maha Movies and Wow.