Voluntary introduction of Conditional Access System (CAS) in 55 cities would be a non-starter, a committee appointed by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has said. Instead, it should be made mandatory for these cities and the roll out should be completed by September 2011, the committee has recommended.
The committee constituted to look into introduction of CAS in 55 cities with population more than one million has asked the government to provide enough time to implement CAS in these cities. TRAI had suggested phasing out implementation over a period of three years starting from October 2008.
The committee recommended that the dates to roll out CAS in these cities should be notified in advance by the Indian government. By September 2011,CAS roll out should be completed, the committee said.
However, the committee has said that voluntary introduction of CAS before the mandated date should be considered. The committee wants that voluntary mechanism should be available for cities other than the 55 identified by TRAI.
TRAI has also asked Information and Broadcasting (I&B) ministry to introduce CAS in remaining areas in three metros from January 2008. The government should notify the January date within a few months so that multi service providers have enough time to set up infrastructure for successful implementation of CAS, a TRAI official said.
The I&B ministry and TRAI is expected to finalise the date for introduction of CAS in three metros within a month.