Trai Asks Independent TV to Justify the Current Tariff Plans in the Backdrop of New Framework

Trai also called for an immediate meeting with a senior official of Independent TV to discuss the matter

By March 4th, 2019 AT 3:50 PM
Highlights
  • Trai received abundant of comments from Independent TV users
  • The sector regulator also asked Independent TV to provide detailed justification on tariff plans

Broadcast regulator Trai has written to DTH operator Independent TV (formerly Big TV) asking it to justify its current tariff plans in the backdrop of the sector’s new regulatory framework. In a letter to Independent TV, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) has also called a meeting with the senior official of the DTH company on the said matter, Tuesday. The regulator flagged the issue after it received several consumer complaints over lack of clarity on tariff plans and their break-up details for monthly charges, a Trai source said, as reported by PTI.

“…You are hereby directed to provide all the information in the prescribed format as sought by Trai…. Further, you are also required to provide detailed justification that the present tariff plans, being offered by Independent TV are in line with the new regulatory framework clearly indicating the bifurcation of the Network Capacity Fee and other charges,” Trai said in its letter dated February 27.

Trai has also asked Independent TV to clarify its position on complaints received by the regulator. The DTH operator is said to have 0.83 million subscribers. Independent TV could not be reached for comments.

The telecom regulator recently unveiled the new tariff order and regulatory regime for the broadcast and cable sector, which paves the way for consumers to opt for channels they wish to view and pay only for them. It has said every channel should be offered a la carte, with a transparent display of rates on electronic programme guide. Last month, the regulator extended the timeline for consumers to make their channel preferences up to March 31, 2019.

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TRAI order is a classic example of “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” In fixing the price they broke the entire structure resulting in increase in Price for most of the user as popular channels are now priced at Rs19 and the rule for minimum Rs 130 for 100 free channels is utter waste. We are paying 130 for all the junk channels which has least viewership.

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