Threats and manipulations – how Republic TV managed to get 52% market share

 

NEW DELHI: Television viewership data captured and measured by BARC (Broadcast Audience Research Council) India released today claimed that Arnab Goswami’s new news channel Republic TV was number one in the week following its launch on May 6, 2017.

Not only the channel number one on All India basis over round the clock, it captured 52% of market share in cities with more than 1 million population and more than 60% share when Arnab Goswami was on air.

The data shocked most people as Republic TV was believed to be being watched only by BJP supporters. General elections data prove that BJP supporters were just 31% of the population in 2014. Out of those 31% who voted BJP three years ago, at least 15% voters are now no longer with the Hindu party and support secular parties like AAP, which means the number of BJP supporters in the country in the last week was just 16%. In such a scenario, how did the channel get 52% market share?

Junta Ka Reporter tried to look into this mystery and our investigations have thrown up shocking revelations over how Republic TV used illegal and criminal means to get such a high TRP.

We got suspicious when a relative of our Editor in Chief shared the following postcard that he had received in March this year:

Threat from Arnab to Muslims

One of the various dirty tricks adopted by Arnab Goswami to push TRPs for Republic TV

It was clear that Republic TV was trying to target Muslim citizens of India, who would have otherwise never watched the channel. Arnab was forcing them to watch the channel by sending such postcards. Unfortunately, Muslim society in India is still superstitious due to effects of Hindu culture, and such postcards are believed to have forced Muslims to watch Republic TV, thus pushing up the numbers.

“This is criminal. Republic TV headquarter is in Mumbai, and in Maharashtra there is a law against superstition. Arnab Goswami should be immediately arrested and sent to jail,” Mr. Javed, Editor in Chief of Junta Ka Reporter said.

Mr. Javed confirmed it with many of his Muslim friends and relatives, and almost all of them had received such postcards. They had further sent such postcards to many more people fearing Allah’s wrath. This alone is expected to have added at least 17% viewership (current population share of Muslims in India) to Republic TV.

Muslims were target not just through postcards, but there are some reports that cow vigilantes too were used to threaten Muslims into watching Republic TV. AAP supporting independent and neutral journalist cum filmmaker Binod Kapri confirmed having witnessed at least one such incident on Twitter.

“I saw a gau-rakshak threatening a Muslim shopkeeper in Bandra that he will attack his shop and spread rumors about beef eating if he did not watch Republic TV all the time,” Mr. Kapri told Junta Ka Reporter. Mr. Kapri said that it was tragic that Muslims were being forced to watch news against secular leaders like Lalu Yadav and Shashi Tharoor.

16% BJP supporters and 17% Muslims together account for 33%, but Republic TV could get 52% market share. Experts believe that this could be due to hacking of remote controls by the BJP IT cell.

“It takes just 30 seconds to replace the motherboard of a remote control,” Saurabh Bhardwaj, an IT expert told Junta Ka Reporter, “I think they have targeted remote controls of people so that whatever button is pressed, TV shows Republic channel.”

With such shocking revelations coming out, one expects that Republic TV is banned for indulging in such unfair and illegal practices. But sources tell Junta Ka Reporter that the Narendra Modi led government of India has asked Arnab Goswami not to worry as they will not take any action against his channel.

In such a scenario, we expect independent governments in Bihar, Delhi, Kerala and West Bengal to ban Republic TV and save journalism in India.