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180 TV channels await government clearance
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NEW DELHI: Applications of 97 private satellite news and current affairs television channels and 85 private satellite non-news TV channels are at various stages of scrutiny in accordance with the Uplinking and Downlinking Guidelines of November 2005.

Parliament was informed by Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Anand Sharma that a total of 381 television channels including 201 news and current affairs channels are being uplinked from India in addition to 67 which are uplinked from overseas and downlinked in the country. Thus a total of 180 non-news channels are being uplinked from within the country, he added.

Of the 67 channels being beamed from overseas and downlinked in India, 14 are news and current affairs TV channels and 53 are non-news channels.

Thus Indian viewers receive a total of 215 news and current affairs TV channels and 233 non-news – including general entertainment and niche channels - under the Guidelines.

In reply to another question, the Minister said that the Uplinking Guidelines had made it mandatory for any channels uplinking from India to inform the Government of any changes in their ownership/acquisition or reshuffle of key posts etc, while those being uplinked from overseas could only be received by companies registered in India.

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