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Local Cable Operators black out TV signals protesting TRAI’s new tariff order

The widespread blackout by LCOs is being reported from the ground. Maharashtra, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana are the most affected regions

Protesting against TRAI’s new tariff order that comes into effect today, the local cable operators across the country have started blacking out the cable connections. The chaos like situation has been created despite TRAI’s appeal not to black out any screen by broadcasters, DTH operators, MSOs, DPOs and LCOs while laying out a migration plan that gives a month to implement the new regime smoothly.

Industry observers feel that TRAI lacked the preparation and could not access the situation on ground. “Why did the authority not come up with the migration plan earlier and educate the LCOs about this phase wise implementation. Coming out with a plan two days prior to the deadline indicates that the authority was not aware about the ground realities,” said an observer.

Even as many LCOs had called off the blackout yesterday after TRAI gave a month for migration,  many LCOs are being pressurised today to switch off signals by Mumbai based LCO association.

According to the reports continuously coming from the ground, even as direct feeds from MSOs are active, LCOs are blocking signal at their end. The most effected regions are Maharashtra and Gujarat besides Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.

In the meantime, the protest has turned political and opposition led by Congress, Shiv Sena and MNS has found it as an opportunity against central government. The opposition backed cable operators are reported to lead the black out in several regions across the country.

Even as most of the LCOs are assuring their consumers that the services would be restored by tonight, the affected areas and their operators are: GTPL Mumbai, Hathway Chembur, InCable Dadar, InCable and Siti Cable Navi Mumbai, many LCOs in Mulund and Thane, Hathway Aurangabad, Den Nashik, InCable Nashik, Home Cable, Saurashtra region of Gujarat, All MSO signals in Surat, Siti Cable Baroda and Valsad, LCOs of Rajkot, GTPL Vision Ahmedabad.

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