The new tariff order (NTO) 2.0 has been challenged by stakeholders in different High Courts.
TRAI has directed pay broadcasters and distribution platform operators (DPOs) to publish required information on their website to allow consumers to exercise their choice of channels and bouquets before 1st March. It added all pay broadcasters were required to report to TRAI, and simultaneously publish on their website, any change in (a) retail prices, per month, of channels and bouquets; and (b) composition of bouquets by 15th January.
DPOs are also required to report to TRAI, and simultaneously publish on their website, any change in (a) network capacity fee; (b) distributor retail prices of pay channels; (c) composition of bouquets of pay channels; (d) composition of bouquets of free-to-air channels; (e) network capacity fee for additional connection beyond first connection in multi TV homes; and (f) network capacity fee for long term subscriptions, as the case may be, by 30th January.
As per TRAI, so far many broadcasters have neither reported nor published the requisite information in terms of the Tariff Amendment Order 2020. It also noted that from the information available on the websites of many Broadcasters that most of the existing bouquets of pay channels are not in compliance with the provisions of the Tariff Order 2017 (as amended by the Tariff Amendment Order 2020).
A few DPOs have also not published the required information on their website nor composition of new bouquets compliant to Tariff Amendment Order (TAO) dated 1st January 2020 have been published.
TRAI said that to ensure that consumers at large are kept fully appraised, all concerned are required to ensure that information about all such existing bouquets which do not conform to the provisions of Tariff Order 2020 and which shall not be available for the consumers on or after 1st March 2020 may be suitably indicated on their website.
The regulator stated that the provisions of the Tariff Amendment Order 2020 are to come into force from 1st March 2020 and several preparatory activities are to be carried out by service providers in a time-bound manner. This is to ensure that sufficient time is actually available to the consumers to exercise their choice of channels and bouquets before 1st March 2020.
“Therefore, all service providers concerned may take suitable steps to ensure that the consumers have enough time to make their choices of channels so that the smooth transition takes place on 1st March 2020,” it stated.