The Bombay High Court on Friday extended the protection granted to Republic TV editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami and other employees of ARG Outlier Media Private Limited from the Mumbai police till January 29 in the alleged Television Ratings Point (TRP) manipulation case.
A status report on the ongoing investigation in the case was submitted by the police to a division bench of justices S.S. Shinde and Manish Pitale.
Senior advocate Harish Salve, representing ARG, said all the allegations made by the Mumbai police of Mr. Goswami paying bribes to rig TRP numbers were “nonsensical”.
Mr. Salve told the court that the Enforcement Directorate (ED) had also registered a money laundering case against the accused and urged the court to call for a status report on the ongoing probe in it. He said by doing so, the court would see that the case against ARG by Mumbai police was malafide.
On this, Additional Solicitor General and ED’s counsel Anil Singh said the report is ready and that the court must accept the same. Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, representing Maharashtra government, however, opposed this and questioned the ED’s locus standi in the matter as the agency was not a party in the case. He said, “I have strong objections to the ED appearing in this matter.”
Mr. Salve said in his response, “I dont understand how the State agency is trying to stop a Union agency from filing a report.”
Mr. Salve said he would like to amend the PIL and implead ED as a party. The court then directed Mr. Sibal to file his reply to the amended plea and adjourned the matter to January 29. The bench also extended the protection to employees after Mr. Sibal said he had no objection to the same.