Mumbai: A sessions court here refused Monday to grant interim bail to Partho Dasgupta, former CEO of Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) and an accused in the TRP manipulation case. The court will hear arguments in the case to decide on Dasgupta’s bail plea January 15. In his plea seeking bail, Partho Dasgupta told the court he was 55 years of age, and a diabetic. He said he suffered from other medical ailments also. He also stated the allegations against him were based on ‘conjecture’.
Dasgupta’s counsel Shardul Singh told sessions court Judge MA Bhosale that no offence of cheating, as alleged by the prosecution, was made out against Dasgupta. He also said since a chargesheet and a supplementary chargesheet had already been filed in the case, Dasgupta deserved to be let out on bail, adding that several of the co-accused in the case had already been granted bail.
Special public prosecutor Shishir Hiray, however, told court the police had filed a voluminous supplementary chargesheet Monday of over 5,000 pages, and that he would need time to go through it.
Singh then said Dasgupta must be granted interim bail since the supplementary chargesheet too had been filed, but Hiray opposed the argument and said the court must not grant interim bail to Dasgupta without hearing the prosecution’s arguments. Judge Bhosale said he was not inclined to grant bail without hearing all parties.
The TRP scam came to light in October last year when BARC filed a complaint through Hansa Research Group, one of BARC’s vendors on engagement with panel homes, alleging that some channels were rigging television rating points.