Cable Operators Welfare Federation (India) has discussed with TRAI on various issues on Cable TV networks recently. A conference / meeting was organised at the TRAI office among Last Mile Owners (LMO) fraternity and honorable members from TRAI.
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Mr. Arvind R. Prabhoo, President of Maharashtra Cable Operator Foundation (MCOF) welcomed the initiatives taken by TRAI to interact with All States Cable Operators Association to discuss the smooth implementation of New Tariff Order (NTO 2.0).
TRAI Chairman Mr. R. S. Sharma had assured that all LMO’s will be safeguarded.
Mr Prabhu said that Conditional Access System (CAS) was good option when the Government introduced the same in 2007. After couple of years CAS was shelved and DAS was implemented by the regulator (TRAI). As per his statement, CAS was a good option to bring in transparency and legitimacy to the business. He further said that DAS was misused by the Broadcasters & Multi System Operators (MSOs). It was a conspiracy to destroy the cable tv industry which was built by the Local Cable Operators (LCOs) over the last 20 years.
Mr. Arvind R. Prabhoo, Convener of COWF requested TRAI to discuss on the agenda which had been previously sent to them. TRAI assured that they will check the agenda & discuss the same.
During the discussion in the meeting Mr. Kapil Dahiya, President of COWF INDIA mentioned the malpractices being carried out by MSOs which drastically affected the Local Cable Operators’ business. At this point, Mr. Prabhoo also mentioned some MSOs are still forcing upon LCOs to sign SIA. He further said why the entire Network Capacity Fee should be that of the LCO. He requested that Headend capacity be delinked from network capacity. Head end capacity is in the domain of the MSO and Network capacity is entirely of the LCOs domain. Mr. Bhardwaj, Advisor of TRAI assured that he will look into the matter.
Mr. Arvind Kumar stated that there needs to be a redefining of the revenues. Since LCO or LMO has to put in maximum efforts, he should get the maximum revenue. He further added that they need to relook at carriage and advertising revenues apart from only subscription revenue.
Mr. Maru, MP Cable & Broadband Operator Association said that TRAI needs to look into SMS & CAS service providers.