A chargesheet filed by the Mumbai police in the TRP scam involving Arnab Goswami of Republic TV and Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC), has released hundreds of WhatsApp conversation between Goswami and Partho Dasgupta, former BARC CEO. The chats show Goswami and Dasgupta, former colleagues at Times group discussing a lot of things.
Mumbai Police releases 500 pages WhatsApp chat between Arnab Goswami and Partho Das Gupta ( Ex CEO of BARC) pic.twitter.com/C3wnxjRi0N— Abhijeet Dipke (@abhijeet_dipke) January 15, 2021
ScoopWhoop couldn’t independently verify the contents of the chat. So we’ll be referring to news reports about the same.
According to Newslaundry, Arnab and Dasgupta met regularly, shared jokes, berated their former employer and other journalists like Rajdeep Sardesai, Sagarika Ghose, Aroon Purie, Ashok Malik, and Rajat Sharma, who they referred to as ‘a fool with a substandard channel’.
According to the National Herald India, both Goswami and Dasgupta seemed fed up with Union Minister Prakash Javadekar and called him useless. The chats also point a few fingers at Goswami for leveraging his contacts with the PMO and calling in favours.
On October 15, 2019, when Goswami tells Dasgupta that he was meeting with a particular AS, Dasgupta asks Arnab if he could get him the job of media advisor with PMO. Goswami’s interview with Amit Shah aired later that day.
Goswami and Dasgupta also seemed to have a rather intense conversation about the whole Hrithik-Kangana fiasco!
In February, the Republic TV Editor-in-Chief told Dasgupta about some strike, Scroll reported. Actually, he referred to it as something ‘bigger than a normal strike’. Three days later, on February 26, 2019, the Indian Air Force carried out a strike targeting a Jaish-e-Mohammad training camp in the Pakistani town of Balakot.
Bigger than a normal strike. And also on the same time something major on Kashmir. On Pakistan the government is confident of striking in a way that people will be elated. Exact words used.
In another interaction from the 4th of April, 2019, Dasgupta asked Goswami if he could stall the TRAI’s proposal to make BARC’s viewing data public.
On the 11th of August in 2017, Goswami was travelling with Union Minister Smriti Irani, who he describes as a ‘great friend’. Dasgupta, who is seen in the chats asking Goswami to speak to Irani and persuade her to deal with the landing page issue.
This has obviously raised a lot of questions about Goswami and his ties to the government. Some are also questioning his trademark brand of nationalism after some of the texts revealed him celebrating TV ratings after a terror attack.
New I&B- Smriti, A great friend!— Mohammed Zubair (@zoo_bear) January 15, 2021
Will organise 4 sure.
Let’s invite her 4 award function, she’s better thn Rathore.
Rathore has refused to join, pls speak to Smriti.
I am meeting her in Delhi, Give me invitation card..
Meeting Smriti? PLS SWING IT FOR US.#ArnabGate pic.twitter.com/I30Tm5FEDx
Phew! Smriti finally confirms!— Mohammed Zubair (@zoo_bear) January 15, 2021
‘Please promote event in a big way now, And make sure she feel feels like whole industry is there for her event….’
‘Do give me some bulletin points to introduce Smriti..’
Ok by tonight! 🔥🤣#ArnabGate pic.twitter.com/WOVS9rKRc4
Terrorist Attack on India was a “big win” for Arnab. He also knew about Balakot Air Strikes before they happened.— Sangamesh (@depuru3) January 15, 2021
EXPLOSIVE Arnab Goswami #WhatsAppLeaks #ArnabGoswamiExposed #RepublicTV #BJP #TRPScam pic.twitter.com/DB9kd1pUta
In case, you were wondering, there is still a lot to unpack here, given that there are hundreds of pages of these conversations that reveal Arnab’s ties to the Modi government amidst a lot of planning and plotting!