Camera: Abhishek Ranjan
Video Editor: Kunal Mehra and Rahul Sanpui
If you always felt ‘why do I pay for the many channels when I watch only few?’ Then, worry no more.
The Supreme Court has given a go ahead to TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India)‘s new tariff scheme. According to the new tariff scheme which will be effective after 31 January 2019 – after being pushed from 29 Dcember – allows TV viewers 100 free-to-air (FTA) channels like Doordarshan at a minimal cost of Rs 130. This 130 Rupees is the network capacity fee, the payment of which is mandatory. The rest is up to you whether you want to subscribe to all 100 channels or not. But, subscription for Ministry of Information and Broadcasting's 26 channels like Doordarshan and its siblings like DD sports and the likes is mandatory.
For the rest, you can select and subscribe to channels of your choice additionally. Or you can buy packs from big broadcasters like Sony Picture Network, Zee Entertainment and STAR India.
Now, make a list of your favourite channels at the earliest as the new tariff regime has already kicked in, and handover your list to your cable operator at the earliest.
But, be quick because the whole city will be submitting the list and it will be difficult for the operator to process the list before 31 January 2019. And, even if you are a DTH subscriber, you have to select the channels. Only TATA Sky subscribers are an exception because they have appealed to the high court and the next hearing is on 10 January.
Now let's get down to the maths.
India has more than 800 channels, of which 332 channels have already declared their prices.
ZEE has introduced 68 consumer-centric packs with Hindi packs starting at Rs 45.
STAR India has introduced value packs in 7 languages with prices starting at Rs 25 for Tamil and Rs 49 for Hindi.
While Sony Picture Network which has distribution rights for 32 channels has also declared its channel MRP for its a-la-carte and bouquets on its website.
It has put an MRP of Rs 90 for the bouquet of HD channels which includes Set, ET, Sab, Max, SONY, Ten 1, Ten 2, Ten 3, etc.