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DAS effect: MIB registered MSOs' list nears 1,000

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NEW DELHI: Although the government is adamant about extending the deadline of the final phase of digital addressable system, the couutry which claims to have more than 60,000 cable operators is finally nearing a total of 1000 multi-system operators who provide signals to them.

The total of MSOs went up to 966 by 28 July 2016, with 26 MSOs gettomg the green signal as provisional licencees after 28 June 2016. The number of permanent licencees (up to ten years) remains at 229.

The Information and Broadcasting Ministry had cancelled the licences of 27 MSOs and closed their cases by 2 June 2016. In most of the other cases in the list of cancelled registrations, it is because of failure to get security clearance from the Home ministry. However, there are cases of many MSOs holding provisional licences for failing to complete certain formalities relating to shareholders and so on.

According to the latest list upto 28 July 2016, the area of operation of three MSOs including one permanent licensee have been revised after 28 June, one of which - Radiant Digitek Network Pvt. Ltd of Kota – which already had a permanent licence for has now got licence to operate pan-India on a provisional licence. .

The other new registrations include the states of, or specific districts in, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, Kerala, and Andhra Pradesh.

With the Home ministry directive about doing away with security clearances for MSOs not being communicated in writing to the MIB, the pace remains slow.

The permanent licence issued to Kal Cable of Chennai had been cancelled on 20 August 2014, but this cancellation was set aside by Madras High Court on 5 September the same year. However, Kal Cable’s name continues to be in the cancelled list – presumably because the cases are still pending.

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