Govt grants nine new TV channel licences
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New Delhi: The information and broadcasting (I&B) ministry has granted nine new uplinking licences to private satellite television channels, taking the total count of TV channels in India to 890 as of 31 July.
According to a list of permitted private satellite TV channels published on the official website of the ministry, as on Tuesday evening, the ministry has granted two non-news uplinking licences to Viacom18 Media Pvt. Ltd which operates TV channels like Colors, MTV and Comedy Central. The new channels are called, My Cam and The Office, according to the list released by ministry.
An e-mailed query sent to Viacom18 remained unanswered.
Out of the nine uplinking licences, the ministry has granted only two news channel licences to a private power firm Cauvery Power Trading Chennai Pvt. Ltd and a Hyderabad-based media company Shreya Broadcasting Pvt. Ltd.
Non-news licence recipients include Viacom18 Media, media companies Media Worldwide Ltd and VIL Media Pvt. Ltd, New-Delhi-based Lex Sportel Vision Pvt. Ltd, Chandigarh-based e-commerce firm Paul E-Commerce Pvt. Ltd and Shopping Zone India TV Pvt. Ltd, which operates a tele-shopping channel Shopping Zone 24/7.
Recently, the ministry had announced its plans to simplify the annual licence renewal norms for TV channels. Former I&B minister M. Venkaiah Naidu, in November, had said that existing broadcasters can continue operations by simply paying annual permission fee 60 days before the due date and that they will not be required to renew the licence annually.
Union textile minister Smriti Zubin Irani was recently given the additional charge of I&B, after Naidu resigned from the post, following his nomination as the National Democratic Alliance’s (NDA) vice-presidential candidate. Read more
For the year 2017-18, the government has allocated a sum of Rs4,409 crore for the I&B ministry, up 5.96% from what it was in 2016-17. The annual budget of the ministry was Rs4,161 crore for 2016-17, according to the revised estimates.