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TRAI vs Independent TV: DTH operator questioned by regulator over consumer complaints

The authority has directed the DTH operator to provide information within 5 days

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MUMBAI: The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has asked DTH operator Independent TV to provide information related to pending refund of consumers due to non-provision of services. It has five days to respond to the regulator.

In its recent notification, TRAI directed independent TV to ensure the compliance of various provisions of the new regulatory framework for broadcasting and cable TV services. The authority has asked the DTH operator to give information on the following issues for the six months up to 30 June 2019:

a) How many connection requests are pending beyond seven days after receipt of payments/subscription from the consumers?

b) How many complaints are still pending regarding refund not provided?

c) In how many cases the refund has been provided to the consumer due to non-provision of services despite collecting the money in advance? Give the number of cases along with the amount refunded.

d) Whether any channel has been removed from your platform without giving prior intimation to the consumer.

e) Whether the services have been resumed after the blackout issue.

f) Whether any rebate has been provided to the affected subscribers during the blackout period. If yes, how much rebate has been provided?

In its direction to Independent TV, the authority informed that it has received numerous consumer complaints wherein the subscribers have complained that Independent TV has discontinued channels opted for by the subscribers and that the operator is neither providing services to the consumers despite collecting the money in advance nor any refund has been made to the consumers.

The company was launched in 2018 and was active in the state of Uttar Pradesh and had 26 distributors in just Meerut and Saharanpur division. It had more than 90 thousand subscribers in the division.

Independent TV’s services were supposed to resume on 3 July. The company’s case is pending in the TDSAT. The authority had ordered Independent TV to clear its dues to Antrix by 12 June or face disconnection.

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