Star India CEO nominated for CAS task force

NEW DELHI: The Indian Broadcasting Foundation (IBF), the apex body of broadcasters operating in India, in its board meeting today, decided that Peter Mukerjea, chief executive of Star India Pvt. Ltd., would be the fifth IBF member to be nominated for the task force on conditional access.

The Foundation is said to have also discussed various other issues, including the rollout of CAS, according to IBF sources.

With Mukerjea's nomination for the task force, Star India has got a direct presence on the government-piloted panel that is laying down the norms of CAS and helping in fixing the price of the basic tier of cable service.

At the time the task force was constituted, broadcasting companies like Sony Entertainment Television India, ESPN and Zee had direct presence on the panel through IBF. Star India had also conveyed to the IBF that it would like to be part of the task force and need not necessarily be represented by ESPN-Star Sports.

Pubcaster Doordarshan director-general S Y Quraishi is a special invitee at the task force and makes occasional appearances at meetings when his inputs are needed.

Coinciding with the IBF decision, Tony D'Silva the distribution head of Star India, today attended the task force meeting where the costing of the basic tier of channels was discussed.

Though not confirmed, it is reported that two other issues were discussed. One, the issue of a proposed government move to ban advertising from pay channels post-CAS and, second, huge outstanding (from the advertising industry) that the cable and satellite channels have accumulated.

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