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Non-supply of channels: Tata Sky moves TDSAT against Sun TV

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MUMBAI: Tata Sky has moved the Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) against the south Indian media major Sun TV Group's reluctance to make available channels to its direct-to-home platform.

The petition, filed today before the tribunal, alleges that the Sun TV Group has refused to supply its bouquet of channels to the DTH player. The case is scheduled for the first hearing tomorrow (15 November).

Tata Sky approached the disputes forum after repeated requests to provide the signals of the channels of Sun's bouquet of channels on "non-discriminatory terms" proved futile.

Tata Sky has sought an appropriate direction in the matter from TDSAT, alleging that Sun TV has quoted unreasonable terms for supplying its signals.

When contacted by Indiantelevision.com, Tata Sky managing director and CEO Vikram Kaushik today refrained from commenting on the development.

Earlier speaking to Indiantelevision.com, Kaushik mentioned, "We are in talks with Sun TV, the most popular network in the southern states, but no commercial agreement is expected soon. We gave them a proposal and are in negotiations with them. But a deal is still far away."

A point of note is that Tata-Sky is simultaneously also battling for Zee-Turner channels. Although the tribunal has directed Zee Turner Ltd, distributors of Zee and other channels, to provide its signals to Tata Sky, the issues of pricing, capacity and other related issues have yet to be sorted out.

According to the norms laid down by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), all content should be made available to all delivery platforms on a nondiscriminatory basis.

Interestingly, Sun TV promoter Kalanithi Maran has set forth plans to enter the DTH space through the still to launch commercially Sun Direct TV. He runs a string of successful channels, which include SunTV, GeminiTV, SuryaTV, UdayaTV, KTV, TejaTV, UsheTV, KiranTV, AdithyaTV, Sun News, KiranTV, GeminiTV, TejaTV, Teja News, Udaya2 and Udaya News.

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