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Ministry of Information and Broadcasting releases operational guidelines for DTH service provider

The Information and Broadcasting Ministry has released operational guidelines for the  DTH industry in terms of schedule of payment of licence fee as well as a framework for platform service (PS) channels and sharing of infrastructure by DTH operators. These operational guidelines have come into effect from Friday.

Platform service channels are DTH operators-owned exclusive channels that carry special content for subscribers.

“As regard to the payment of licence fee by DTH Operators, the guidelines define the schedule for its quarterly payment,” the Ministry said in a statement.

DTH companies need to pay 8 per cent of its Adjusted Gross Revenue, calculated by excluding GST from Gross Revenue (GR) as the licence fee. “The licence fee is to be paid on a quarterly basis, the quantum thereof to be equal to the actual licence fee payable for the preceding quarter,” the guidelines added .

Platform services
Meanwhile, the total number of permitted platform service channels for DTH operators have been capped at 5 per cent of the total channel carriage capacity.

“All such channels need to carry a caption as ‘platform services’ to distinguish them from the linear channels,” the guidelines added.

In addition, the content of such channels needs to be exclusive to the DTH operator and cannot be shared directly or indirectly with any other Distribution Platform Operator, the guidelines added.

“All PS channels should be placed together under genre ‘platform services’ in the Electronic Programme Guide (EPG) along with their maximum retail price and option for activation / de-activation,” the Ministry stated in its guidelines

The guidelines also provide the framework under which DTH service providers can share infrastructure in which the sharing may be regulated, lays down the procedures for accountability and compliance and defines individual responsibilities of the sharing parties.

The Ministry had amended DTH guidelines issued on December 30, 2020 and now issued the operational framework. The Hindu BusinessLine

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