Television

Win to go off air from Thursday night

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MUMBAI: The FM radio airwaves are hotting up again. As the deadline for paying license fees ends tomorrow, private FM players in the metros are taking a determined stand. Even as the information and broadcasting ministry dithers on taking a decision on the recommendations of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai), which has suggested deferment of license fees by the operators, the private players are trying alternative routes.

The Millenium Broadcast run Win 94.6 has decided to go off air from 11 pm tomorrow, protesting its inability to pay the crushing license fees. The station has started anouncing its intention on its shows, and is inviting callers to phone in with their opinions, in an attempt to mobilise popular support.

Entertainment Network India Limited, which runs Radio Mirchi has taken the legal route. Its petition, seeking to restrain the government from attaching its bank guarantee in the event of non payment of license fees, will come up for hearing in the Mumbai high court this morning.The case was to be heard on Tuesday, but was postponed till this morning, ENIL sources say.

Win, which had adopted a similar protest strategy of staying off air for a month last year, expressing inability to pay the fees, has declared a similar intention this time.The ball is now in the I&B ministry's court.

Stay tuned for further details.

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