Regulators

Ten's McDonald meets I&B minister Reddy

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NEW DELHI: A fortnight ahead of a crucial hearing in the Supreme Court relating to a cricket telecast row between Doordarshan and Ten Sports, senior executives from the latter company met the information and broadcasting minister Jaipal Reddy today.

The meeting was described as a "courtesy call," but the Dubai-based Taj Television Ltd CEO Chris McDonald admitted that various issues relating to sports broadcasting were discussed s part of a general discussion with the minister.

Asked specifically whether the issue of DD-Ten Sports wrangling, now pending a decision in the apex court, was brought up, McDonald replied in the negative.

McDonald was accompanied by Taj TV India head Sarmishta Rijhwani, who added that "nothing specific" was brought up or discussed during the meeting with Reddy.

Ten Sports is involved in a legal wrangle with Indian pubcaster DD over the telecast of the India-Pakistan cricket series, held after 14 years, in Pakistan last year. Ten has been claiming that allowing DD to also show the cricket matches, the rights of which ere obtained exclusively by Ten, has resulted in financial losses.

The Supreme Court, earlier, had directed DD to deposit Rs 500 million with the court, which may be used to cover up Ten Sports alleged losses, if proved in the court.

In turn, DD has been lobbying with the government to enact a legislation that would ensure the terrestrial broadcaster also getting telecast rights of any events that is deemed important for the country, irrespective of the fact whether a private channel has obtained telecast rights or not for India.

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