Tata Sky, a major DTH provider of India, has locked horns with the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) in a legal battle which is ongoing in the Delhi High Court. The Delhi High Court on Thursday suspended Tata Sky’s ongoing legal battle, in which Airtel Digital TV, Discovery and Sun Direct are also a part. In its latest move, Delhi High Court has adjourned the case till March 11. The regulator had announced a few days back in a notification that the deadline for the implementation of the new tariff regime is now March 31. This news is reported by Indian Television.
Subscribers Will Be Switched to Best Fit Plans: Trai
The regulator also highlighted that if by chance, subscribers had not switched to the new Trai based plans and packs then they would be automatically migrated to the “Best Fit plans” which will be curated based on their viewing habits and region. Trai chairman, RS Sharma in a conference held a few weeks back had dismissed a report by Crisil which said that cable and DTH bills would rise after the implementation of the new Trai tariff regime. Indian Society of Advertisers' (ISA) executive council has also advised its members not to use BARC data during the transition period. The BARC said that this would stretch up to six weeks
In the court session dated February 4, Discovery India Communications counsel Gopal Jain followed the arguments of Tata Sky senior counsel lawyer Kapil Sibal. On the same day, Trai informed the court that the implementation of the new tariff order has already happened on February 1. To recall, Trai had to serve a show cause notice to Tata Sky after it had severely delayed the introduction of its Trai based channel pricing and packs.
The show cause notice said, "Tata Sky has failed to provide options to its 17.7 million subscribers in compliance with the new framework to exercise their choices for TV channels. Tata Sky has put its subscribers in a situation of great difficulty despite no fault of theirs by not complying with the provisions of the new regulations and the tariff order.”
Tata Sky Assures Timely Completion of Migration
However, chairman and MD, Harit Nagpal has said that Tata Sky is confident of completing the migration process promptly. The CEO and MD said, “Tata Sky has always been compliant to regulatory requirements. We have gone live with our modes of communication across the Tata Sky website, Tata Sky mobile app and also equipped the dealers that subscribers can reach out to. We were confident that we would be able to complete the task in one week’s time. Hence, we used this time to a seamless and smooth transition for all our subscribers. We have ensured that choosing channels and packs is as easy as 1, 2, 3 for any subscriber.”
To recall, the roots of this legal battle were laid down back in 2017, when Bharti Telemedia, Tata Sky and Discovery Communications India had filed petitions against Trai. In the filing, the companies had challenged the tariff regulations and the interconnect regulations.