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TRAI issues recommendations on DTH licensing

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, Aug 25: The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India(TRAI) today released its Recommendations on Licensing issues relating to DTH, providing for clarifications to certain provisions of the licensing conditions, and certain guidelines to be followed in the adoption of the MDU (Multiple Dwelling Unit) technology, which is basically perceived to be in consumer interest.

The Ministry of I&B had sought the Authority's views regarding certain issues relating to the licensing provisions of the Direct to Home Service.

These guidelines will ensure that the interests of the consumers are protected by allowing the multiple service providers to enter the same premises.

Through such fair competition, the interests of the cable operators and other competitors to the DTH operators would also be protected, the TRAI said here.

The major recommendations are as follows: There should not be any amendment in Articles 7.1 and 7.2 of the DTH License Agreement which mandate technical interoperability among DTH service providers.

The license conditions should be amended to provide for casting an obligation on the service provider to inform and educate the consumers about the limited technical interoperability of the Set Top Boxes with Personal Video Recorders/Digital Video Recorders.

The guidelines for uplinking from India should be amended to exclude DTH platform services aimed at enabling the subscribers to utilize the platform efficiently and informing them of platform functionality and services.

The DTH license conditions should be amended to specifically permit use of MDU technology subject to the following conditions: The DTH service provider should not insist on any exclusive arrangement for installation of MDU technology to the detriment of other distributors of TV channels; Signals from the MDU technology shall not be provided to a consumer outside the multi-dwelling unit building, where the MDU technology is installed; The MDU technology should not carry the content from any other service provider other than the DTH service provider; and the DTH operator shall obtain written consent from those subscribers living in a multiple dwelling unit who are desirous of availing the facility of MDU technology, before installing the same.

A general permission obtained from office bearers of the Residents Welfare Association/Group Housing Society will not be considered sufficient.

UNI

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