Javadekar ‘useless’, would prefer Irani as I & B Minister, says Arnab Goswami in leaked WA chat
On Oct 15, 2019 when Arnab tells PDG he was meeting AS, Dasgupta asks Arnab if he could get him media advisor’s job with PMO. Arnab’s inw with Amit Shah was aired later that day, leaked chat alleged
Mumbai Police this week submitted a 3,400-page supplementary charge sheet in the TRP case against BARC (Broadcast Audience Research Council) and Republic TV among others. It had earlier submitted a 1,400-page charge sheet in November.
While senior advocate Harish Salve appeared for Republic TV, Mumbai Police was represented by Kapil Sibal, who objected to Salve’s submission that if the Enforcement Directorate’s findings turn tout to be contrary to the findings of Mumbai Police, it would prove that Mumbai Police is unduly harassing Arnab Goswami.
As the courtroom drama unfolded, social media exploded with allegations of leaked WhatsApp chats between Goswami and BARC’s former CEO Partho Dasgupta (PeeDeeGee ?). The damning incriminating chats seemed to suggest complicity between the two.
More than 50 pages of Goswami’s WhatsApp conversations are said to be part of the supplementary charge sheet in the Republic TV-TRP fixing case. These chats show how Arnab Goswami abused his access to PMO, I&B ministry and ‘AS’ to fix his business interests. At various instances Arnab boasts off his access to PMO, NSA and I&B ministry.
Chats show the two collaborating on a strategy to trip rivals and boost the ratings of Republic TV. This included Partho sharing confidential BARC data with Arnab over WhatsApp and email and seeking help from the PMO in return. Dasgupta also claims in these chats that he has helped the government several times in the past.
In the chats, both seem unhappy with the new I&B minister Prakash Javdekar, in one of the chats he was called useless. Arnab is also seen making fun of Rajat Sharma and NBA, claiming that Sharma had no access to the PMO.
From a change in I&B ministry portfolio to ousting of Nripendra Misra from PMO, Arnab is seen claiming advance knowledge of all these developments.
Reference to a powerful “AS” comes up multiple times who seems to have a big clout over the government. On October 15, 2019 when Arnab tells PDG that he was meeting AS, Dasgupta asks Arnab if he could get him the job of media advisor with PMO. Arnab’s interview with Amit Shah was aired later that day.
Earlier on April 4, 2019, PDG asks Arnab: Can you help by telling AS to tell TRAI to pipe down on BARC?
Arnab replies: “I can send a msg. Then Arnab asks PDG to send three points describing how TRAI’s actions were against ‘AS’s’ political interests. Arnab claims in these chats that complains sent to I&B ministry against Republic TV were kept aside and he was briefed by the then I&B minister Rathore about those complaints in advance.
However, in later chats he tells PDG that he preferred Smriti Irani because she was a “great friend”.
On 7 July 2017, PDG tells Goswami that there has been a complaint in Ministry of Information and Broadcasting about Republic TV. Arnab replies that he had already been informed by Rathore, who was keeping the complaint aside.
Advocate and activist Prashant Bhushan tweeted, “These are a few snapshots of the damning leaked WhatsApp chats between BARC CEO & #ArnabGoswami. They show many conspiracies & unprecedented access to power in this govt; gross abuse of his media & his position as power broker. In any Rule of law country, he would be in jail for long.”
(Disclaimer: This report is based on social media posts viral on Twitter. NH has not been able to verify independently the authenticity of the leaked conversations)
Published: 15 Jan 2021, 5:19 PM