Arnab Goswami
Arnab Goswami
File Photo

Mumbai: The Bombay High Court was on Friday informed that the Mumbai Police's action against the Republic TV and it's editor Arnab Goswami in the alleged TRP scam case is legitimate and not a result of any kind of political vendetta. The city police further denied all allegations of malice on its part and also the contention that Republic TV and Goswami were being targeted by the force.

The city police made these contentions on affidavits it filed through its top cop Param Bir Singh, before a bench of Justices Sambhaji Shinde and Manish Pitale. It denied the allegations of falsely implicating the channel or its office bearers.

"We received a legitimate complaint regarding the scam and a preliminary probe was conducted along with an analytical report, which was submitted by BARC. Following the probe, we have collected substantial evidence against the channel," the police stated in its affidavit filed through senior counsel Kapil Sibal.

"The allegations of malice on our part, as alleged by Republic TV, have been made only to escape the probe and prosecution into the scam. It must be noted that that two other channels are also named in the FIR but none of them have raised such allegations," the affidavit states.

The police further trashed the contention that it harboured "ill will and malice" against Republic TV due to its coverage in the Sushant Singh Rajput death and Palghar Sadhu lynching cases.

"The Mumbai police is a professional police force. It does not let individual opinions affect its judgement. We deny there is any concerted effort or political conspiracy as alleged by Republic TV," the city police said.

The police in its affidavit, further highlighted the fact that the trial court in the case has already taken cognizance of the chargesheet filed against Republic TV and its employees. It also defended its press conference held initially and claimed that the press was briefed about the scam by following the due procedure.

As far as the Hansa Group is concerned, the city police claimed that the plea filed by the group to transfer probe to some other agency is premised on "ulterior motives" it has, only to escape the probe which has unearthed the nexus between the channel and the research firm.

Meanwhile, the bench has adjourned the matter for hearing on February 9 with a directive to all parties to complete the pleadings in the case.

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Free Press Journal