Total number of private TV channels in the country goes up to 821

NEW DELHI: The number of permitted satellite television channels has jumped to 821 by November-end from 798 in July following streamlining of clearance procedures by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry.

These include 404 news and current affairs channels and 417 general entertainment channels.

The statistics show that 693 channels (including 382 news channels) are permitted to uplink and downlink from within the country, while 93 (including 16 news channels) are uplinked from overseas and downlinked into India and 35 (including six news channels) are uplinked from India for beaming overseas and not in the country.

Some of the new entrants over the past few months have been the GEC Epic TV, Bengali Orange TV. Luck TV; the non-news  Sairam TV; Bhojpuri Cinema TV, the non-news Tamil Meenakshi TV; the non-news Blue TV in Hindi, English, Punjabi and regional languages; the news Janam TV, INE Live, and Kalinga TV in scheduled languages.

This apart, Times Television Network (TTN) has also got three new licences: Times Now 2, Times Now 3 and ET Now 2.

The biggest gainer is the Star Network with Star Cricket Asia, Star Sports Highlights, Star Sports HD3, Star Sports HD4, Star Sports HD2, Star Sports HD1, Star Sports 3, Star Sports 4, Star Sports 2 and Star Sports 1 in all permitted languages under the Constitution.

The year 2014 has thus seen the clearance to more than 25 channels.

To expedite the process which had remained stagnant after March-end, the Information and Broadcasting Ministry now holds the Open House meetings with stakeholders two times every month instead of once.

The Ministry also placed on its website the names of the companies which own these channels, the language, and the date when permission was granted.  

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