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Can TRAI really stop Arasu?? What is the fate of Chennai cable??

Plea against switching off analog cable signal.

CHENNAI, December 29, 2012

A writ petition has been filed in the Madras High Court seeking to restrain the Union Information and Broadcasting Ministry or any other authority from switching off the analog mode of transmission of programmes through cable television till the supply of set top boxes by the Tamil Nadu Arasu Cable TV Corporation Ltd.

The petitioner, Balaji Raghunathan of Adambakkam, said as per the amendment to the Cable Television Network Regulation Act, every household must have a set top box to watch cable television. Without ensuring adequate number of set top boxes and supplying them, the Centre was preventing the poor from watching the cable television.

The poor and middle class families were expecting set top boxes from the State-owned Corporation which had not started distributing the instrument.

A Vacation Bench comprising Justices K.Venkataraman and K.B.K.Vasuki ordered notice returnable by two weeks.

“Tamil Nadu Arasu Cable TV Corporation has not started distributing set top boxes”


Now with Madurai HC already ruling that TRAI has to give licence which TRAI has ignored after their notice yesterday, what will TRAI do if Chennai HC too goes in favor of Arasu?


TRAI clearly states even political related companies cant undertake distribution of
TV channels, wont this affect the larger MSO already existing in chennai as it is clearly a political entity.

Dont know the fate of Chennai..

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  1. Centre trai(ing) Arasu patience.

    Notwithstanding the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s (TRAI) recent recommendation to bar State and Central governments from entering cable TV distribution business, officials of the State-run Arasu Cable TV Corporation are confident that the company will be able to continue its operations by securing appropriate licenses.

    Officials here argue that it would be unjust for the TRAI to prevent States from entering into the cable TV business when the Centre is already active in the field through the Prasar Bharati. Though it is often argued that Prasar Bharat i is an independent statutory authority, not many are buying the argument as its operations are prone to be influenced by the ruling party at the Centre. A senior Arasu Cable TV official pointed out the Prasar Bharathi owns the DD Direct Plus, a DTH service. “How can States alone be prevented from venturing into the business,” he questioned. Another official said that the TRAI’s recommendation was not new. “The recommendation was first made in 2008. But despite this the Centre gave the CAS license to Arasu Cable TV the same year. Similarly we hope to the Centre will consider the ground realities and grant us the Digital Access System (DAS) license as we have to shift to digital transmission which is mandated by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry,” explained D Vivekanandan, Managing Director, Arasu Cable TV Corporation.

    The TRAI has argued against entry of the States and Centre or ventures promoted by them into TV broadcasting as it could result in a monopoly. Besides, ruling parties might exploit their control to distort news, views and opinions.

    But officials said ground realities are different in Tamil Nadu (TN). “Unlike in most other states, cable TV distribution business had always been a monopoly in TN which is common knowledge. Only after Arasu Cable started its operations, the monthly subscription came down to just Rs 70 making everyone happy,” said Vivekanandan.

    However, cable operators while crediting Arasu Cable for ending the hostile environment in the cable TV business, said that the State must also permit other Mutli-System Operators (MSO) to function. “Arasu Cable must not be the only MSO. Just like telecom operators, customers must have choice in cable TV too. This will lead to a healthy competition and provide better services to the customers,” says P Sakilan, president, Tamizhaga Cable TV Operators General Welfare Association.


    Ref: http://newindianexpress.com/states/tamil_nadu/article1401311.ece

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