Competitors of Republic TV were seen in a celebratory mood on social media after the Mumbai Police accused the channel of manipulating its TRP. They were jubilant and quick to offer sermons and lectures as they saw an opportunity to target Arnab Goswami after failing spectacularly in denting his viewership. However, now that the Editor-in-Chief does not appear particularly distressed, at least some of them are losing control of their mental faculties.
Mustafa Shaikh of India Today could be seen on TV huffing and puffing and labouring profoundly while trying to elicit some response from Arnab Goswami on the ‘fake TRP scandal’. The Republic Editor, meanwhile, appeared amused with the whole situation and had two fingers up in a gesture indicating victory.
Republic TV’s Arnab Goswami evades question on #TRPScam revealed by the Mumbai Police. (@mustafashk)#RepublicCheatsBharat #RepublicTRPChor— IndiaToday (@IndiaToday) October 8, 2020
Watch #7At7 LIVE: https://t.co/4fqxBVUizL pic.twitter.com/LdN2t2SCA1
Mustafa Shaikh was clearly not amused with the whole situation. There he was running around trying to get an answer from Arnab Goswami and all he received in return were smiles and a symbol of victory. Before long, his patience ran out and in an act of sheer desperation, he ripped his heart of his chest (metaphorically, of course) and laid his feelings bare for the whole world to see.
“A simple question, Arnab… A simple question, Arnab… the question we are asking is that Mumbai Police has registered a case against you… what do you have to say? What do you have say…? Mumbai Police has registered a case against you, Arnab..,” wailed Mustafa Shaikh. It was then that Mustafa realised that in order to have the faintest chance of victory, he had to gamble everything he had. It was now or never.
It was then that Mustafa said, “Arnab, the question we are asking is…. It’s a simple question, if you have not done anything wrong, you are innocent… WHY ARE YOU GIVING US THIS TREATMENT? WHY ARE WE BEING FORCED… IF YOU SAY IT’S YOUR VICTORY, WHY DON’T YOU ANSWER THE QUESTIONS, ARNAB?” But in a heartbreaking moment, Arnab Goswami just drove off without even acknowledging his existence.
Now, out of breath and his will crushed, Mustafa Shaikh had no choice but to admit defeat. Humiliated and panting for breath, he finally declared, “Arnab Goswami of Republic TV just now left from his house without answering a single question from us (more huffing and puffing)… with (unintelligible) and Mustafa Shaikh (more huffing and puffing)… for India Today.”
It is unclear whether the whole spectacle was more uncomfortable for Mustafa Shaikh or the India Today anchor in the studio or the viewer who was forced to endure the horror-show. With news coverage such as this, it is not entirely surprising that India Today has extremely low ratings. It was another instance where Arnab Goswami spectacularly defeated India Today, but this time, without even being aware of the journalist’s stellar efforts at trying to corner him.
For those unaware, earlier today, Mumbai police made some sensational claims against some TV channels saying that they were manipulating TRP ratings. In a press conference, Mumbai Police commissioner Param Bir Singh had accused three TV channels, including Republic TV, of being involved in manipulating viewership data of BARC by paying those households where Bar-o-meters, the devices that track TV viewership, are installed.