TDSAT to hear Sony-Tata Sky audit case on 23 January

Sony had approached TDSAT in October

MUMBAI: Accepting the joint plea made by Sony Pictures Networks India Pvt. Ltd. and Tata Sky Ltd, the Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) has listed the hearing of the broadcasting petition filed by the former on 23 January 2019.

SPN had sought an order allowing it to conduct an on-ground technical and commercial audit of Tata Sky’s systems in the month of October this year. It had also asked Tata Sky to cooperate in the audit process and ‘provide unhindered access’ to its systems, given that the latter had signed a RIO agreement in 2004 with Taj TV India Pvt. Ltd., which is now a part of SPN, conceding the right to hold audit in favor of the broadcaster.

Tata Sky in response had claimed that the said regulations are not acceptable in the light of another RIO agreement that was executed between the parties on 29 September 2018 and became effective from 1 October 2018.  

It had said that it is “not opposed to the holding of an audit by an independent auditor but it is opposed to applicant’s having unhindered access to many other information and data relating to products of other broadcasters”. It requested that an independent authority, such as BECIL, should conduct the audit and also objected to some clauses in the agreement on the ground that they will encroach upon its right to keep certain information confidential.

In the previous hearing, on 27 November 2018, TDSAT had ordered both the parties to allow BECIL to conduct the audit at an early date, preferably within two weeks, in accordance with the requirement of regulation keeping the concern of SPN in view.

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