With implementation of TRAI orders, monthly subscription charges will rise: Pune cable operators association

Updated on Dec 16, 2018 03:00 PM IST
They have decided to file a petition in the Bombay High Court to challenge the latest order from the TRAI
The Pune cable operators association has decided to file a petition in the Bombay High Court to challenge the latest order from the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India regarding pricing of cable television channels.(PHOTO FOR REPRESENTATION PURPOSE ONLY)
The Pune cable operators association has decided to file a petition in the Bombay High Court to challenge the latest order from the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India regarding pricing of cable television channels.(PHOTO FOR REPRESENTATION PURPOSE ONLY)
Hindustan Times, Pune | By

The Pune cable operators association (PCOA) has decided to file a petition in the Bombay High Court to challenge the latest order from the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) regarding pricing of cable television channels.

TRAI in its order had said that viewers will be allowed to select and pay for individual television channels from January 1, for which broadcasters would be required to draft per month retail price (MRP) of the channels. Also, broadcasters may offer to their customer’s bouquets of channels, which should not be priced below 85 per cent of the sum of MRPs of the all channels combined in the pack, TRAI has said.

“With the regulatory authority failing to respond to appeals from the Pune cable operators association (PCOA) to revoke the decision citing the financial burden on citizens, the association has decided to file a petition in the high court,” said Dhairyasheel Jagtap, president, PCOA. The association represents more than 1,000 local cable operators in Pune.

Jagtap, said, “With the implementation of the new order by TRAI, the monthly subscription charges which currently are around 350 will rise to 1,800 as we offer roughly around 400 channels at a very low price. However, if citizens have to bear charges for every channel, the total cost will witness an exorbitant surge.”

According to Jagtap, this will also lead to fewer subscriptions from customers, which would affect the business of local cable operators adversely.

“If people chose lower subscriptions, the payments we receive will reduce to a minimum thus impacting the entire business of local cable operators. Eventually, it may lead us to shut down our operations as with reduced revenue, it will be very difficult for us to pay the taxes (particularly Goods and Services Tax (GST) of 18 per cent) to the government,” he said.

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