400 cable operators demonstrate outside I&B Ministry

NEW DELHI: Senior officials of the Information and Broadcasting Ministry met members of the Indian Broadcast Foundation (IBF) and the News Broadcasters Association (NBA) along with other stakeholders to discuss hurdles in the way of digitisation of cable television.

The discussion primarily centered on carriage fee and the format of agreements between the various stakeholders including subscribers.

The broadcasters were emphatic that carriage fee should be done away with it. Senior officials including joint secretary (broadcasting) Sanjay Murthy agreed to consider the various issues that were raised at the meeting.

A ministry source told that the meeting was part of a series that was being organised to ensure smooth switch over to digital addressable systems.

Around 400 local cable operators, who are members of Cable Operators Welfare Federation (COWF) demonstrated outside Shastri Bhavan, which houses the ministry, to gain entry and express their point of view at the meeting. Around 150 of them were later detained by the police and taken to Parliament Street police station where they were later let off.

The ministry source, however, said that local cable operators (LCOs) who are the members of the taskforce had been invited to the meeting but only one of them had attended.


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