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Murdoch pitches for speedy DTH clearance

NEW DELHI: News Corp chairman Rupert Murdoch today held one of the longest meetings with a representative of the Indian Government, information and broadcast minister Jaipal Reddy, towards the end of his five day visit.

At the end of the over one hour meeting at Shastri Bhavan, Murdoch's message was clear - Let's get the DTH cart moving faster.

 



Briefing journalists after the meeting, Reddy said that Murdoch did request for "expeditious clearance" of Space TV DTH application.

The application for a DTH license of Space TV, 80:20 joint venture between Tata Sons and Star Group, has been pending with the I&B ministry for over eight months now. Other ministries like home and finance have cleared the application.

Interestingly, Murdoch referred to pubcaster Doordarshan's free DTH service and praised the way it has progressed.

At the moment, apart from DD Direct Plus, the only other DTH service beaming is Dish TV, 20 per cent owned by Zee Telefilms.

 

 

According to Reddy, Murdoch spoke at length on the global, technological revolutions during the meeting, as also the China market vis-?-vis India.

As per information available, Murdoch reiterated his stand on the need to further liberalise FDI norms in some sectors like media.

A similar pitch was made during a meeting with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh yesterday.

Murdoch also met up with telecom and IT minister Dayanidhi Maran. The media baron flies out of India tomorrow morning after what has been described as "a successful Indian tour."

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