March 2020


NDTV‘s net profit (Dec 31, 2019) has increased to ₹ 12.13 crore as against ₹ 8.31 crore in the same quarter of the previous fiscal.

The company’s operations revenue was ₹ 93.67 crore and expenses was ₹ 85.03 crore operating profit was ₹ 19.09 crore and segment revenue declined to ₹ 92.23 crore.

The retail/e-commerce division had an operating loss of ₹ 25 lakh and revenue was at ₹ 2.07 crore. N

DTV group’s digital company, NDTV Convergence, remains a market leader in the online news space with its 14th consecutive profitable quarter.

NDTV and its subsidiary NDTV Convergence have sold 100% of their investment held in Fifth Gear Ventures Ltd for cash consideration of ₹ 6.93 crore each totalling up to ₹ 13.86 crore. Fifth Gear Ventures has ceased to be the company’s subsidiary with effect from 27th January.

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The Govt has dropped plans to levy a 10% license fee on broadcasters and cable operators.

The Govt has created steps to strengthen the broadcasting system and taking steps to improve ease of doing business. The total number of private satellite channels is 918. And 1630 Multi-System Operators (MSOs) registered with MIB. Local Cable Operators (LCOs) are not currently registered with the MIB.

There are five DTH operators in the country. These include Dish TV, Tata Sky, Bharti Telemedia, Sun Direct TV, and Independent TV.

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Prasar Bharati chairman A Surya Prakash retired from his position, ending his two-term long journey that started in 2014. Prakash was appointed as the chairman of Prasar Bharati for a second term in December 2017, after he had retired in October same year. He was earlier the chief of bureau at Indian Express, executive editor of The Pioneer, India editor of Asia Times and editor of Zee News. He has authored two books-- What Ails Indian Parliament and The Emergency-Indian Democracy’s Darkest Hour.

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In 2019, the MIB found 68 television channels to have violated the Programme & Advertisement Codes. Of these, advisories were issued to 30 channels & 39 channels were issued warnings. Three channels were told to go offair and 30 channels were directed to run apology scrolls.

In 2018, only one channel had violated the guidelines & was instructed to go off-air.

Since 2010, 89 advisories have been issued to the private satellite TV channels to ensure adherence to the Programme and Advertising Codes prescribed under the Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995. Of these 68 have occurred in 2019 alone!

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The News Broadcaster’s Association (NBA) has appointed 4 new members to the News Broadcasting Standards Authority (NBSA), the self-regulatory body that looks into content violations by news channels.

The four new members are former Chief Election Commissioner of India Dr. Nazim Zaidi, National Commission for the Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) former Chairperson Stuti Kacker, Ministry of Textiles former Secretary Zohra Chatterji, and former India’s Ambassador to the United States Navtej Sarna.

They replace Nitin Desai, Dr. S. Y. Quraishi, Leela Ponappa and Vijayalakshmi Chhabra whose terms at the NBSA have ended.

The Chairperson of NBSA is Justice A. K. Sikri, a former judge of the Supreme Court of India, who was appointed in May 2019. He succeeded Justice (Retd.) R.V. Raveendran, who completed his term in May 2019.

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Prasar Bharati has sold 4 MPEG-4 slots on prorata basis for 1st February to 14th May, to Samay (Hindi news), JK 24×7 News (Hindi news), 9X Jalwa (Hindi music), and Sangeet Bangla (Bangla music).

The slots were sold against a reserve price of ₹ 16.5 lakh per slot. 8 new MPEG-2 channels were also sold, viz: Abzy Cool, Hindi music channel Showbox, Bhojpuri movie channel Ganga Biskope, Hindi music channel Wow Music, Hindi news channels TV9 Bharatvarsh and ABP Ganga, Punjabi entertainment channel Zee Punjabi and Marathi channel MR TV.

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Siti Networks, cable division of Zee Essel Group, has become the first company to notify new cable rates that will come into effect from March 1, 2020 under TRAI’s revised tariff plan.

The company has declared on its website in which it has updated the number of channels available under the basic slab to 200, and the maximum network capacity fee to be ₹ 160 plus tax.

As per the earlier TRAI scheme a customer was assured of getting only 100 channels within the first slab of ₹ 130. However, many cable and DTH operators were offering more than that on a voluntary basis.

Similarly, under Tariff Order 1.0, customers were to pay extra network charge for subscribing to extra channels, while under the amended order, there are only two slabs, and the customer can activate any number of channels for a network fee of ₹ 160. Pay channel charges will continue to be extra and separate.

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Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (ZEEL) is making an all out effort to recover its dues from Independent TV. It has moved the TDSAT which has issued notice to Independent TV to provide a reply in 5 weeks. The matter has been posted ‘for directions’ on 12th March.

The tribunal has asked Independent TV and ZEEL to settle the issue of outstanding dues or explore ways to return the decoders. Independent TV had shut down last year leaving thousands of subscribers in the lurch. The Government had earlier suspended interim renewal of Independent TV’s DTH licence.

Independent TV subscribers are also looking at Independent TV to get their refund.

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