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Siti Networks in Kolkata to migrate pay channels to new TRAI tariff scheme in phased manner

The MSO will start the process before the grace period given by Calcutta High Court

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MUMBAI: Essel group promoted multi-system operator (MSO) Siti Network has planned to migrate Pay TV channels in Kolkata in a phased manner to get non-compliant subscribers to transition to the new TRAI tariff regime. While around 80 per cent of the MSO's 14 lakh subscribers were still to pick their pay channels from an a-la-carte list.

According to a report from The Telegraph, the MSO will start the process before the grace period given by Calcutta High Court in a recent order.

“About 20 per cent of our customers have filled in forms online or offline, specifying the channels they want to watch. We have shifted most of them to the channels of their choice. We will now start shifting the others who have not exercised their choices to the new system by withdrawing their pay channels. They will continue to get the free-to-air channels,” Siti Cable director Suresh Sethia said.

If there is chaos after the migration, the company might start moving some of the subscribers to combinations closest to their current packs. According to the report, another MSO is expected to move subscribers to a combination of channels that can be accommodated within the pricing brackets they are currently in.

“Since most pay channels are now priced higher than they were in the previous system, they will obviously miss out on some, if not several. The only way out is for them to register their choices immediately,” an official was quoted by The Telegraph.

Earlier Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) extended the deadline for consumer migration to new plans till January 31. Despite the additional month, several MSOs complained that the majority of subscribers had not responded to the grace period making transition very difficult.

80 cable operators from the city also filed a petition against the order in Calcutta High Court and initially got a stay too. But the high court vacated the stay.

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