Star hikes capital base in Space TV

NEW DELHI: Star TV affiliate Space TV has made some changes in its application for permission to start a KU-band DTH venture that involves increasing the company's financial base, a senior government official has said.

Pointing out that the clearance of a DTH application does not solely depend on the information and broadcasting ministry but other ministries as well, a senior I&B ministry official was quoted as saying that , "As far we understand, Space TV has made some changes in its application and expanded its financial base to qualify as a serious player."

Space TV is understood to have increased the paid-up capital of the company to about Rs 100 million from a low paid-up capital base of just Rs 500,000.

"This move has been necessiated as the finance ministry had pointed out that permission to start a big ticket venture like DTH ought not to be given to a company which had a low paid-up capital. The official also said that no time frame can be provided for clearance of the two applications which have come for DTH (the other has come from Subhash Chandra's Agrani).

"However, our aim is to give the clearance as soon as possible and the moment we get all the necessary go-aheads from other places like the home ministry, we will proceed," the official said.

Meanwhile, he also pointed out that Star News broadcasting's request for permission to start a news channel in India and also uplink to an Indian satellite is being "processed."

"Since they have applied as a foreign company, the necessary security and other checks have to be done before a permission is given. But it looks like a routine matter," the official said.

Faced with some opposition from within the government, Star reworked its application and sought permission to start a news channel (Star News) under the foreign news channel's category. It has also emphasised that Virgin Island registered Star News Broadcasting Ltd will source news content from Star India.

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