Come clear on FM stand, TDSAT tells government

NEW DELHI: The government has come under pressure on the issue of FM radio policy with a telecom and broadcast tribunal, TDSAT, asking it to come clear on the issue by 26 April.


TDSAT, a semi-judicial body that had been approached by the private FM players, is irked of the fact that the government has delayed taking a decision on certain recommendations on FM broadcast policy by Telecom Regulatory Authority of India that has led to uncertainty in the industry.

A three-judge bench of TDSAT was hearing today a petition filed by a group of FM radio broadcasters, including Radio Today Broadcasting, Music Broadcast Pvt Ltd and Entertainment Network, all of who run FM stations in various cities under the brand name Red FM, Radio City and Radio Mirchi, respectively.



The counsel for the radio broadcasters said there had been an inordinate delay by the government (read the information and broadcasting ministry) in finalising its views on Trai's recommendations, which suggested shifting to a revenue-share model from the licence fee payment mode, amongst other things, Press trust of India reported today.

Trai had submitted a comprehensive set of suggestions on FM radio broadcast to the government last November. After receiving the recommendations, the government had also sought clarifications from Trai on certain issues, voicing its reservations on things like migration to revenue share.

Even as the Government firms up its guidelines for the second phase of FM radio licensing, it has asked the existing players to cough up high licence fee which they have refused, leading both the sides to the tribunal.

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