Regulators

Sun TV to move HC on denial of permission to bid for FM Phase III auctions

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NEW DELHI: The Sun TV Group is planning to move the High Court in Delhi or Chennai on Monday (20 July) to challenge the denial of permission to Red FM to bid in Phase III of FM auctions.

Sun Group chief financial officer SL Narayanan told Indiantelevision.com that the Group had received a formal communication from the Information and Broadcasting Ministry on night of 16 July that it would not be allowed to bid in view of pending cases against the Maran brothers.

Narayanan said that the Group had so far refrained from commenting as “we do not want to fight in the media,” but was not reacting as the Ministry had given it a cause of action for a writ petition under Article 226 of the Constitution.

The list of 21 bidders, which had got the go-ahead on 15 July did not contain the name of Red FM, which is a strong contender.

Narayanan also said that the cases against the Marans were not linked to security issues and had in any case not been concluded. Further, he said that a company could not be asked to close down merely because it had some cases pending against it.

Expressing his gratitude to the manner in which the Indian media had taken up the cause of freedom of the press on behalf of Sun, he said that no plans had been drawn up for moving the Courts on Sun TV since there was no cause for action as the government had so far failed to send any communication relating to the security clearance issue pending with the Home Ministry.

He was particularly grateful to Indian Broadcasting Foundation (IBF) president Uday Shankar and Association of Radio Operators in India’s (AROI) Uday Chawla for writing to Prime Minister Narendra Modi as well as Home Minister Rajnath Singh and I&B Minister Arun Jaitley.

In addition, political parties Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) and PMK had also issued statements condemning the delay by the Government in taking a decision.

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