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Implementation of first two phases of cable TV digitisation has taught valuable lessons: Tewari

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NEW DELHI: Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari has said the first two phases of digitisation of cable television provided a learning experience as far as implementation of the process was concerned.

Speaking at the 8th Indian Magazine Congress in the capital on the theme “Winning through Innovation”, he said these lessons would be incorporated while implementing the remaining two phases. The Minister reiterated that Digitisation was bound to be a game changer for the sector and would define contours of orderly growth.

While providing qualitative choices to the consumer, digitisation would also ensure that the subscription revenues and skewed business models are rectified. The Government has already decided to merge phases III and IV and complete the entire process by December this year.

While the first phase of digitisation covering the four metros had come into effect from November 2012 (though it was stayed in Chennai following a court order and was implemented marginally in Kolkata after initial reluctance), the second phase covering 39 cities was implemented by 31 March 2013.

The Government is still considering the proposal to merge Phase III covering all urban areas (Municipal Corporations/Municipalities) and Phase IV covering rest of India to 31 December 2014. The present dates for these two phases are 30 September 2014 and 31 December 2014 respectively.

Ministry sources told indiantelevision.com that if the government achieves its target, it will overtake countries like the United States and the United Kingdom which set long deadlines.

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