Media, money and polls: The press linked to political donors

Over Rs 1,000 crore in political funding came from donors linked to media houses. Most are no strangers to controversy.

WrittenBy:Tanishka Sodhi
Electoral bonds with logos of media houses.

Just three years after its launch, a Hindi news channel topped the TRP leadership for more than half of 2022, defeating most legacy brands. And now, it is leading another top 10 chart, though for different reasons.

TV9 Bharatvarsh’s parent group Associated Broadcast has Megha Engineering and Infrastructure Ltd, an infrastructure giant, as its majority stakeholder. Megha is also the second biggest buyer of electoral bonds. 

The TV9 network itself is no stranger to controversy. While it has projected its round-the-clock coverage of regional wars as the reason behind its high TRPs, its counterparts have alleged irregularities in the ratings.

But it’s not the only media property that has links to companies that have purchased electoral bonds. From radio stations and TV networks to web portals and a magazine, various media outlets are linked to firms that have together purchased bonds to the tune of Rs 1,086.5 crore.

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