The TRAI has released several recommendations for platform services offered by DTH operators, defining them as programmes transmitted by distribution platform operators exclusively to their own subscribers.
The definition excludes Doordarshan and registered TV channels, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) said in a statement on November 13.
Platform services shall not include foreign TV channels that are not registered in India, the telecom regulator said.
A reference was received from the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) on July 2 this year, seeking recommendations of the TRAI for inclusion of a few issues regarding platform services with reference to the DTH guidelines.
The TRAI issued a consultation paper on ‘Platform Services offered by DTH Operators’ and subsequently, an open house discussion was held.
Based on the comments of the stakeholders, the TRAI has finalised its recommendations.
The TRAI has reiterated the definition of platform services as recommended in ‘Regulatory Framework for Platform Services’ dated November 19, 2014.
“Platform services (PS) are programmes transmitted by Distribution Platform Operators (DPOs) exclusively to their own subscribers and does not include Doordarshan channels and registered TV channels. PS shall not include foreign TV channels that are not registered in India,” TRAI said giving its definition of platform services.
Registered TV channels or television channels means a channel, which has been granted downlinking permission by the central government under the policy guidelines issued or amended by it from time-to-time and reference to the term “channel” shall be constructed as a reference to “television channel”, the TRAI said.
The programme transmitted by the DTH operator as a platform service shall be exclusive and the same shall not be permitted to be shared directly or indirectly with any other Distribution Platform Operator (DPO), it said.
The programme transmitted by the DTH operator as a platform service shall not directly or indirectly include any registered TV channel or Doordarshan channel or foreign TV channel, the TRAI said.
Time-shift feed of registered TV channels (such as +1 services) shall not be allowed as a platform service, the telecom regulator said.
The DTH operator shall ensure and provide an undertaking to the ministry in the format prescribed by it that the programme transmitted is exclusive to their platform and not shared directly or indirectly with any other DPO, it said in its recommendations.
Incase the same programme is found available on the platform service of any other DPO, the ministry or TRAI may issue directions to immediately stop the transmission of such programme.
The ministry also reserves the right for cancellation of registration of such a platform service of the DTH operator, the TRAI said.
The total number of permitted platform services for a DTH operator shall be capped to 3 percent of the total channel carrying capacity of the DTH operator platform and subject to a maximum of 15 platform services channels, it said.
A one-time non-refundable registration fee of Rs 10,000 per PS channel shall be charged from a DTH operator, it said.
The platform services channels shall be categorised under the genre ‘Platform Services’ in the Electronic Programmable Guide (EPG) subject to orders, directions, regulations issued by the TRAI from time-to-time, the statement said.
The respective maximum retail price (MRP) of the platform service shall be displayed in the EPG against each platform service subject to orders, directions, regulations issued by the TRAI from time-to-time, the TRAI said.―Money Control