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Plea In HC Against Recent Regulation On Interconnection Between Distributors And Broadcasters

The Delhi High Court on Monday sought response of telecom regulator TRAI on a plea challenging its recent regulation making it mandatory for all broadcasters to disclose every agreement and arrangement they have with distribution platform operators (DPOs).

A bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice C Hari Shankar issued notice to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) seeking its stand on the petition by the Indian Broadcasters Foundation (IBF).

The petition has contended that by way of the regulation TRAI seeking information about all arrangements and agreements between broadcasters and DPOs which have no relation to interconnection of broadcasting services.

The plea by the IBF has sought quashing of various provisions of the Telecommunication (Broadcasting and Cable) Services Register of Interconnection Agreements and All such other matters Regulations, 2019, which was issued on September 4 and would come into effect from January 2, 2020.

According to IBF, TRAI ought to be concerned only with the technical and commercial arrangements between broadcasters and DPOs with regard to distribution of signals of TV channels.

It has contended that by way of the regulation, TRAI was trying to “usurp” jurisdiction which it does not have under the law.

It has sought quashing of those provisions in the regulation which make it mandatory for broadcasters to disclose all agreements and arrangements they have with DPOs.―Business Standard

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