Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has made amendments to the New Tariff Order (NTO) allowing consumers to have 200 channels instead of 100 at the same price of Rs 130. TRAI Chairman RS Sharma said that the sum of the a-la-carte price or individual price of channels constituting a bouquet cannot be more than 1.5 times the price of Bouquet.
Speaking to the media, Sharma said, "There were 100 channels which were given at Rs 130 and it included mandatory channels broadcasted by Prasar Bharati. Now you have 200 channels in Rs 130 excluding the Prasar Bharati channels. Fine-tuning the provisions of New Tariff Order (NTO), we are providing more channels to consumers. No channel should be priced more than the price of Bouquet and the sum of the a-la-carte price of channels constituting a bouquet cannot be more than 1.5 times the price of Bouquet."
TRAI chairman explained that this was done to remove distortions and unfair practices. TRAI has reduced the prize of channels forming the part of bouquets from Rs 19 to Rs 12. Now the channels having an MRP of Rs 12 or less are permitted to be part of a channel bouquet.
"Many of the broadcasters have misused the Rs 19 ceiling rule and have priced the channels costing Rs 5, 7, 8, etc to Rs 19. As a result in any Bouquet, the channel is either Rs 19 or less than Rs 1. Things were either on the ceiling or at the bottom, nothing was in between. Even HD and SD channels having different prices are fixed at RS 19. The ceiling rule was misused" he said.
"Earlier Rs 19 was the ceiling but now the channels that are priced less than Rs 12 or equal to that will be part of the bouquet," said TRAI Chairman RS Sharma."Earlier it was not appropriate from the consumers' viewpoints and also distorted consumer choice," he added. The TRAI has made amendments to the New Tariff Order (NTO).
(with ANI inputs)