Prasar Bharati, India’s public service broadcaster on Monday announced that Jantantra TV emerged as the winner of its 51st e-auction. The public service broadcaster on Monday held its latest round of e-auction for the allotment of the vacant MPEG-4 slot on the DD Free Dish platform. Prasar Bharati on December 21, 2020, invited applications from broadcasters for the allotment of vacant MPEG-4 slots on India's free Direct-to-Home (DTH) service. The public service broadcaster said that the winners of its 51st e-auction will be charged on a pro-rata basis with the slots said to be valid from January 1, 2021 to March 31, 2021.
Jantantra TV Wins Vacant DD Free Dish Slot
Jantantra TV, a Hindi news channel is said to be based out of Uttar Pradesh with the channel also available on other DTH platforms including Airtel Digital TV and Tata Sky. The Hindi news channel will only be available to the DD Free Dish users with a Set-Top Box (STB) capable of receiving the MPEG-4 signals.
It has to be noted that Prasar Bharati in its notice on December 21, 2020, highlighted that the 51st e-auction was “open” to all genre channels. However, the public service broadcaster had set a reserve price of Rs 28.91 lakhs for the vacant slots on the DD Free Dish platform with a validity between January 1, 2021 to March 31, 2021. Prasar Bharati also highlighted that the channels were required to pay a non-refundable processing fee of Rs 25,000 along with a participation fee of Rs 1.25 lakh. The channels winning the e-auction were permitted to make the payments for the vacant slot in two monthly installments.
Three New Channels Available on DD Free Dish Platform
Meanwhile, the broadcaster has now added three channels including Star Utsav Movies, Sony Wah and Filmachi on the DD Free Dish platform. The three channels including Sony Wah won the 50th e-auction on December 21, 2020, for the allotment of vacant MPEG-2 slots on DD Free Dish. Prasar Bharati had earlier said that the channels winning its 50th e-auction will have the slots between December 29, 2020 to March 31, 2021.