Home > Uncategorized > Digitization of Cable TV: Deadline shifted for 4 metros

Digitization of Cable TV: Deadline shifted for 4 metros

Keeping in view public interest and written commitments from stakeholders for fully implementing the regulations of TRAI with regard to digitization of cable TV, the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting has decided to modify the 30th June deadline for a complete switch over to 31st October 2012 for all four Metro Cities i.e Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata.

The Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Amendment Act, 2011 has made it mandatory for switchover of the existing analogue Cable TV networks to Digital Addressable System (DAS) by December 2014, in a phased manner. In respect of four metros of Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai, the digital switchover is mandated to be completed by 30th June 2012.

Regulations on Tariff & Interconnection were issued by TRAI only on 30th April 2012 instead of being issued in January, 2012, as expected.  The Quality of Service Regulations and the Consumer Complaint Redressal Regulations were issued on 14th May, 2012 by TRAI. As per these Regulations, every Broadcaster and MSO was required to publish its Reference Interconnect Offers (RIOs) within 30 days of issue of the Regulation.  Another 30 days are required for negotiations between Broadcasters and MSOs.  Thereafter, the MSOs and LCOs arrive at agreements which enable the consumers to have a clear indication of the terms and conditions for installing Set Top Boxes and the prices of channels on an a-la-carte as well as on a bouquet basis.

The second order of TRAI of 14th May, 2012, which mandated that every MSO or its linked Cable Operator has to put in place a Consumer Complaint Redressal System consisting of a complaint centre with toll free consumer care number, web based complaint monitoring system as well as appoint or designate one or more nodal officers and publish consumer’s charter for DAS.

Both these orders of TRAI have not yet been substantially implemented.  As a result of this, the installation of Set Top Boxes has not picked up necessary pace for the completion of the process of digitalisation by 30th June, 2012.

The assessment of these ground realities, has compelled the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting to set a new deadline.

All the TRAI regulations for DAS will come into effect from 01st November, 2012.

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