Mumbai: Khar Police have issued summons to Republic TV's Pradeep Bhandari for allegedly assembling a crowd outside Bollywood actress Kangana Ranaut's house at the time of demolition last month. Interestingly, the news of his summons comes a day after the Mumbai Police Commissioner Pramabir Singh had revealed that anchor Arnab Goswami's news channel Republic TV was one of the three channels involved in the ‘false Television Rating Points’ (TRP) racket.
Abhishek Trimukhe, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Zone 9) confirmed the development to The Free Press Journal and said that Bhandari is likely to be questioned in the matter. Meanwhile, in a tweet, Bhandari revealed that he had been asked to appear before the Mumbai Police at Khar and that he was awaiting the official summons before he appeared for questioning.
On Thursday, CP Singh had sent a shock wave in news channels across the country with the claims to have busted the fake TRP racket, mentioning alleged involvement of Republic TV, Fakt Marathi and Box Cinema. The crime branch sleuths have already arrested four people-- two former employees of Hansa Research Group Pvt Ltd-- Vishal Bhandari, 20 and Sanjiv Rao, 45 along with owners of Fakt Marathi Shirish Shetty, 44 and Narayan Sharma, 47 of Box Cinema. The owners and promoters of Republic TV are likely to be called for questioning, said police. These channels have allegedly indulged in such malpractices of buying TRP.
While rebuffing the Mumbai Police's claim, the Republic network in a press statement said that, "Singh has made false allegations against Republic TV as they have questioned him in Sushant Singh Rajput's (SSR) case investigation and they will file a criminal defamation case against Singh".
The TV channel further alleged this as desperate measure because of their coverage on various issues including SSR case and Palghar lynching case. Goswami in his one of debate shows demanded resignation of Singh for alleging mishandling of SSR case.