DPOs can charge a maximum of Rs 130 for providing 100 SD channels, says TRAI Advisor Arvind Kumar

Kolkata, Nov 22 (UNI) The Telecom regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) today conducted a half-day consumer outreach programme and interactive session on ‘New Regulatory Framework for Broadcasting & Cable Services’ in the city. 


The role of TRAI in shaping the regulatory and policy framework governing the sector, tariff orders among others were discussed in the programme. 


Speaking on the occasion, Arvind Kumar, Advisor (Broadcasting and Cable Services) said, the Distribution Platform Owners or DPOs can now charge a maximum of Rs 130 (excluding taxes) as network capacity fee for providing 100 channels according to the new regulatory framework. 


This in turn ensures availability of certain minimum number of channels to consumers and a firm revenue stream for DPOs.
Kumar reiterated that a customer will now have a choice to subscribe channels on a-la-carte basis, while the broadcasters will have the freedom to make bouquets.


A bouquet will not be able to comprise Free to Air or FTA channels, channels with MRP more than Rs 19, High Definition (HD) and Standard Definition (SD) variants of the same channels. 


According to him, carriage fee has been capped to 20 paisa per subscriber per channel.


The carriage fee reduces as the subscription for the channel increases and becomes zero when the subscription reaches to 20 per cent of the total subscriber base of the DPO. 


He added that provision of call centre for grievance handling has been made mandatory in the new regime.


S K Das, Advisor, TRAI, Kolkata in his address disclosed the total figure of the telephone subscribers in the country as well as the overall tele-density in the country among other details.


It is to be mentioned that the number of telephone subscribers in India has increased to 1,206.22 million till March 2018.
The overall tele-density in the country reached 92.84 per cent with the urban figure of 165.90 per cent and the rural one at 59.05 per cent till March, 2018. 


Debasis Sen, Additional Chief Secretary (IT & E), Government of West Bengal, was the Chief Guest of the programme.

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