DTH companies have the advantage in Digitisation: Cable operators

The digitisation process being ushered in by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry was providing DTH companies advantage over local cable operators, the Cable Operators Federation of India (COFI) today claimed.

hidden April 05, 2013 22:49:58 IST
DTH companies have the advantage in Digitisation: Cable operators

New Delhi: The digitisation process being ushered in by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry was providing DTH companies advantage over local cable operators, the Cable Operators Federation of India (COFI) today claimed.

A statement released by COFI president Roop Sharma said cable operators were were finding it difficult to convince the subscribers to pay more than double the subscription for lesser number of pay channels every month apart from paying for the set-top-box (STB) that does not belong to them.

"This has given undue advantage to six DTH players who are in existence for many years mostly run by 'Pay' channel broadcast companies and have nothing to do with cable TV digitisation.

DTH companies have the advantage in Digitisation Cable operators

Representational Image. Reuters

As STBs are in short supply and government has ordered to switch off 'Pay' channels on analogue networks, consumers are rushing to the DTH companies putting cable operator's livelihood in jeopardy," the statement said.

The cable operators' body also submitted a memorandum to Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari protesting that big DTH companies were engaging in the activity of cable networking by setting up multi-dwelling unit (MDU) set-ups.

"This may not look to be a cable networking but is akin to cable networks which is pushing out the cable operators from these societies and colonies," COFI claimed.

It said that TRAI had in the past advised that licensing conditions should be amended to ensure a regulatory mechanism to govern the installation of MDU and consumers are given a fair choice as MDU set-up tends to be monopolistic.

The COFI memorandum also claimed that DTH operators had been violating the interoperability clause given in the license agreements.

The cable operators' body requested that the state government and nodal officers responsible for digitisation should also ensure DTH operators do not violating licensing conditions and license of those who violate be cancelled.

PTI

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