I&B minister Manish Tewari's update on Phase II digitisation data

New Delhi: The level of cable television digitisation in 38 cities in 14 states and one union territory of Phase II has touched 89.8 per cent, including 28.33 per cent DTH homes as on 21 April, three weeks after analogue switch-off.

Thus, a total of 14,379,454 digital set top boxes have been seeded out of a total demand of 16,013,059 total TV households. The houses where STBs have been installed include 4,536,676 DTH subscribers.

According to a report presented to parliament by information & broadcasting minister Manish Tewari yesterday, the total number of TV households has been computed by making provision of twenty per cent for multiple TVs in offices/shops or homes.

Pointing out that a toll free number receives complaints from subscribers and others, Tewari said these are normally forwarded to the multi-system operators in the area concerned.

14 cities have already crossed the 100 per cent with Hyderabad at the top with 191.07 per cent followed by Ludhiana (175.91 per cent), Allahabad (160.46 per cent), Faridabad (142.69 per cent), Chandigarh (119.23 per cent), Meerut (112.24 per cent), Jaipur (111.84 per cent), Varanasi (111.78 per cent), Amritsar (111.03 per cent), Thane (109.33 per cent), Jodhpur (107.94 per cent), Aurangabad (103.37 per cent), Indore (102.29 per cent), and Nasik (101.75 per cent).

By the government?s own claim, Ghaziabad, Pune and Kanpur have crossed the 90 per cent mark.

Srinagar stands at the bottom with 22.28 per cent seeding of STBs, with Visakhapatnam at 29.61 per cent, Coimbatore at 29.74 per cent, and Jabalpur with a DAS reach of only 45.32 per cent. All the other 17 cities have crossed the 57 per cent mark.

The ministry had announced earlier this month that analogue signals has been completely switched-off in the five states of Maharashtra, Punjab, Rajasthan, West Bengal, Haryana, and the Union Territory of Chandigarh.

DAS continues to be stayed in the cities of Bhopal, Indore, Jabalpur, Hyderabad, and Visakhapatnam. The Karnataka and Gujarat High Courts had learlier this month quashed petitions seeking extension of DAS thereby paving way for the analogue signals to be switched-off. In addition, stay continues in Chennai which was part of Phase I because of court case.

The Supreme Court is expected to hear tomorrow a special leave petition by the Indian Broadcasting Foundation seeking to quash all pending cases in various high courts and also ensure there is no postponement of the date of digitisation.

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