Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh on Monday said a meeting has been called tomorrow (Tuesday, January 19) to discuss "our next course of action" regarding the purported chats between Republic TV editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami and former Broadcast Audience Research Council head Partho Dasgupta.
"We are gathering information about the leaked chats between Arnab Goswami & Partho Dasgupta. Some highly sensitive things including the Balakot airstrike & the Pulwama attack have been mentioned in the chats," Deshmukh said.
"We are looking as to how Arnab Goswami got access to such sensitive information. We have called a meeting tomorrow to decide our next course of action," he added.
Earlier in the day, the Sharad Pawar-led Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) asked the government to set up a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JCP) to probe the purported chats between Goswami and Dasgupta.
Referring to the purported chats widely reported in media which mentioned that Goswami was privy to the Balakot air strikes, NCP chief spokesperson Mahesh Tapase said, "It is extremely shocking and disturbing to know how issues related to national security have been used to gain TRPs." Tapase said he will meet Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh on Tuesday on the issue and seek clarification from Union Home Minister Amit Shah on the 'chatgate'.
"The question also arises how Arnab was privy to such sensitive information. The Ministry of Home Affairs has to identify the source and immediately take action," he said.
Goswami has been at the forefront in maligning the image of the Mumbai Police and also the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in the state, Tapase claimed.
"In his TV debates, he tried to give a communal angle to the Palghar incident. The Sushant Singh Rajput death case was blown out of proportion and a false narrative was set. All this was done with the sole intention to destabilise the MVA government," Tapase said.
The BJP should clarify its position on Arnab Goswami, he said.
Dasgupta, who was arrested in the fake Television Rating Point (TRP) case, is now in the ICU of state-run JJ hospital in central Mumbai.
A diabetic, he was rushed to the hospital from the Taloja Central Prison in Navi Mumbai on Saturday after his blood sugar levels went up on Friday midnight.
The Mumbai Police had earlier told the court that Goswami had allegedly bribed Dasgupta with lakhs of rupees to ramp up Republic TV's viewership.
(With PTI inputs)