On 31st May, TRAI issued a mandate, a portion of which reads as follows,
“It has come to the notice of the Authority that several MSOs providing cable TV services are placing some channels at more than one LCN under multiple genres simultaneously. The Authority views such practice as material non-compliance of the extant regulatory framework prescribed by it. Therefore, all the MSOs are hereby advised to strictly comply with the extant regulatory framework in letter as well as spirit, failing which action shall be taken against such operators as envisaged in terms of the provisions of the TRAI Act, 1997 . ”
It has been reported that rating of Republic TV has gone down by over 50% after the issuance of this notice by TRAI, bringing it closer to realistic levels of the weekly reach of general English news channels, which is an average of 0.6 to 0.8 million.
“Not only has the TRAI released this important mandate, it has also aggressively followed it up with Multiple System Operators (MSOs) against these practices. The NBA is grateful to the TRAI for taking swift measures to stop the malpractices , ” , reports TOI .
The matter also garnered attention from the TRAI, (mostly) because it was dragged to the Delhi High Court along with the Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) and Republic TV in relation to the same issue.
TV Today network had filed a writ petition in the Delhi High Court claiming that Republic TV is made available in multiple frequencies, thereby unfairly increasing its viewership. It was here that Republic TV had ensured that such malpractices will no longer exist.
News Source- Bar & Bench