Trai extends date of stakeholder views on tariff for HITS to 30 April

NEW DELHI: The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) has extended to 30 April the last date for receipt of comments of stakeholders to its consultation paper on tariff and interconnection issues related to Headend-In-The-Sky (HITS) services.

The extension has been given in view of the demand by stakeholders and keeping in view the importance of the issue and the need for wider participation of stakeholders in the consultation process.
Trai also extended to 8 May the date for submission of counter comments, adding that no further extension would be given.

The paper was issued by Trai on 6 Aprilconsequent to the guidelines for providing HITS broadcasting service in India issued by the government on 26 November 2009. Stakeholders had been asked to submit their comments and counter comments by 26th April and 3rd May respectively.

In the paper, Trai asked stakeholders to give their opinion on whether the tariff model for HITS should be based on the DTH (direct-to-home), Cas (conditional access, or non-Cas system. 
Trai has also sought to know how the tariff model will be regulated and sought the views of the stakeholders on carriage and placement fee.
The consultation paper follows the Information and Broadcasting Ministry’s reference to Trai on 10 December last to revisit the Interconnection Regulations and issue Tariff Orders for promotion of HITS services.

Among other things, Trai also wants to know the revenue shares of broadcaster, HITS operator, and cable operator, the retail tariff for subscribers for pay channels, and whether there should be any minimum tariff for the subscribers.

Suggestions have also been sought on any other model to regulate the tariff for HITS service, and whether the quantum of carriage and placement fee should be linked to some parameters. Stakeholders have also been asked to give their views on putting a cap on the quantum of carriage and placement fee and how this will be fixed.

Stakeholders have also been asked to suggest any further amendments to implement HITS policy.

In the model where HITS operator is only a passive infrastructure provider, HITS operator will get replaced with ‘MSO who is using HITS platform for distribution of signals’. Trai, thus, wants to know if there can be any other model.

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