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TRAI directs DPOs to refrain from placing channels outside the genre

TRAI will take action if DPOs fail to comply with the regulations

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MUMBAI: After receiving complaints from TV18 and TV Today Network against Republic Bharat, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has directed all distribution platform operators (DPOs) to refrain from placing channels outside their genres.

TV18 and TV Today Network had written to TRAI that the newly launched Republic Bharat is being placed outside the Hindi news genre to garner higher viewership.

TRAI stated, “The authority has received many complaints alleging transmission of television channels on dual LCN or placement of television channels by the distributors of TV channels, out of the genre declared by the broadcaster.”

The TRAI regulations require every broadcaster to declare the genre of its channels such as ‘devotional’, ‘general entertainment’, ‘infotainment’, ‘kids’, ‘movies’, ‘music’, ‘news and current affairs’, ‘sports’ or ‘miscellaneous’.

It is also mandatory for the distributor to place channels in the electronic programme guide, in such a way that the television channels of same genre, as declared by the broadcasters, are placed together consecutively and one channel shall appear at one place only. The authority has also said that action will be taken against such distributors who fail to comply with the regulations.

“Now, therefore, the authority, in exercise of the powers conferred upon it under section 13, read with clause (b) of sub-section (I) of section 11, of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India Act, 1997 (24 of 1997) and in order to protect the interest of service providers and consumers and ensure orderly growth of the sector, hereby directs all distributors of the television channels to ensure that the television channels of same genre, as declared by the broadcasters, are placed together consecutively and one channel shall appear at one place only failing which action shall be taken against such distributors, under the provisions of TRAI Act, 1997,” TRAI concluded.

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