A BARC audit report confirmed that TRPs were "manipulated" under the previous BARC management, the Indian Express reported the Mumbai crime branch as saying.
The police said that the report had been prepared by a "third party" and had been submitted to BARC in July. It had been commissioned after new management took over BARC in January and "received whistleblower comments", Express said.
Joint police commissioner (crime) Milind Bharambe said: "The report said from a period of May 2017-November 2019, TRPs of English and Telugu news channels had been fudged. It showed that TRPs of channels like Times Now had been reduced so that Republic would appear to be no. 1 by analysing selectively."
Express noted: "The officer added that according to the report, in some cases 'rating appeared to be pre-decided' and that there was 'cartelisation' of some former senior BARC officials to assist particular channels."
The police claimed they were "unaware" of the existence of the report until last week.
Bharambe also disclosed "emails and WhatsApp chats" exchanged between former BARC employees and channels on BARC servers, Hindustan Times reported. One of the communications allegedly said: "Please find below numbers on English news, as required. Times Now numbers were changed while Republic remains same."
On December 24, BARC's former chief executive officer Partho Dasgupta was arrested in connection with the scam. Last week, the police had arrested Romil Ramgarhia, the former chief operating officer of BARC.