Cable TV

UP cable ops end strike to air elections

NEW DELHI: The cable operators of Uttar Pradesh have decided to call off their 10-day-long strike following the intervention of state chief minister Mulayam Singh Yadav.

The move is being seen as conciliatory, as the Assembly elections in Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan were held today, and it is understood that people would be eager to follow the counting day, and watch the outcome.

While most operators across UP started showing news channels since early today, entertainment channels are expected to be shown by tonight, agency reports from Lucknow stated.

UP cable operators' welfare association president Anil Upadhyaya said that the decision to show news channels was taken to enable the viewers watch the elections.

The breakthrough came yesterday when operators met Yadav at his official residence. The CM had reportedly assured them that their demands pertaining entertainment tax would be sorted out within a month. ''He has assured that till that time the government or the entertainment tax department would not take action against us,'' Upadhyaya was quoted by agencies as saying.

While the government was seeking entertainment tax of 30 per cent, the operators were willing to pay only Rs 20 per connection to the entertainment tax department.

Earlier, there were hopes that the cable strike would be called off during prime minister Atal Behari Vajpayee's one-day visit to his parliamentary constituency here on 27 November. Operators in most of the 70 districts of UP had participated in the strike.

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