The statement points out that the MSO has repeatedly pointed out during the entire digitisation consultation process that:
1. Domestic manufacturing of the set-top boxes (STBs) should be encouraged so that there is no dependence on the Chinese import, as there is requirement of billions of these STBs to be supplied/ installed at every consumer home in the country depending on the number of TV sets owned by a household.
2. What the consumer will pay in order to obtain the digital STB is still unclear and no details are available about warranty and after sales service of imported boxes.
3. The fee to be paid by the consumer to the pay channels/service cost per month was still unclear. He said the former Trai chairman had deliberately kept this issue under forbearance and did not fix any tariff / rates for the pay TV channels as he was to retire within 15 days from the day he had to issue the tariff notification of forbearance for the pay TV channels. This may result in consumers end up paying three to four times more for the cable TV subscription each month.
4. The LCO/ LMO s are not being brought under the ambit of this DAS regulation. Though they are the people who are solely responsible for convincing the subscribers, install STB, collection of subscription and servicing 24x7 with some QoS at the consumer homes. At least they should also be asked to get registered for longer duration and some norms for providing Quality of Service (Q0S) to the consumers be defined for them. Otherwise, we will see the consumers being put to exploitation and undue hardship.
5. Why has DTH also not been brought under the DAS regulation when it is the same content/product that is being provided to the consumers, Chaudhary wants to know. "Are the present Government and the Ministry officials bent upon making the business of already bleeding DTH companies by making the cable TV services costlier for the consumers so that these companies increase their subscriptions to consumers , providing an opportunity for these ventures to be commercially viable? Today DTH has to meet up with the prevailing cable TV rates in the country when offering their packages. Cable operators cannot increase the rates to keep them affordable by the masses."