The 56th Parliamentary Standing Committee on Communications and Information Technology highlighted issues surrounding cable TV regulations, the disparity between OTT and Cable, advertising guidelines for Pay TV and FTA channels and the reduction in workforce in Cable TV.
To address the concerns of the industry, the panel believes that the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting needs to ensure that the proposed “Broadcasting Services (Regulation) Bill, 2023” is passed at the earliest. It also urged the Ministry to take initiatives for making the Ministry as the registering authority for LCOs.
Addressing the prevalence of broadcasters leveraging the channel bundle plan, the committee has issued the following guidelines:
The panel also echoed concerns raised by the All India Digital Cable Federation (AIDCF) that broadcasters have substantially increased Pay TV channel prices.
The advertising guidelines for Pay TV and Free-to-air channels aren’t well demarcated and the committee believed the channels need to be categorised based on their respective sources of revenue. Addressing this further, the committee laid down the following:
The committee recognises the decline in the workforce in Cable TV with the advent of technology and called upon the Ministry to apprise about the measures envisaged to address this issue.
Addressing the existing disparity between Cable TV and OTT Platforms, the committee highlighted: