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General News GTPL proposes to enter into RIO agreement with IndiaCast
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[Image: GTPL-and-IndiaCast-main.jpg]MUMBAI: Multi system operator (MSO) GTPL Hathway has told Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) that it wants to enter into a reference interconnect offer (RIO) agreement with IndiaCast Media Distribution from 1 November, the TV distribution arm of TV18 and Viacom18.

IndiaCast responded back saying that the parties can move forward towards a new once the on-going audit is completed within two weeks and after the parties have adverted to the arrears. The tribunal stated that it will consider the issue of arrears later on as it may require adjudication.

The tribunal also stated that GTPL’s request will be considered on next date. The MSO stated that its system is compliant and RIO agreement can be entered into without waiting for the on-going audit.

The MSO made the declaration after IndiaCast filed an application seeking vacation of the ad-interim protection granted to the MSO on 5 September.

IndiaCast’s grouse was that GTPL has interpreted the interim order in a way to get rid of a clause in the earlier agreement which provided for packaging its channels.

The spirit of the interim order is to continue the earlier agreement for the time being although that agreement had already expired on 31 August.

The tribunal noted that since the old agreement was allowed to continue for the time being, the clause providing for packaging will also bind the parties till the order is modified.

With this clarification, the tribunal extended the interim protection granted to the MSO till the next date. It also made it clear that the MSO will not supply signals in the areas which are not authorised by the agreement that existed till August 2017.

In spite of alleged arrears whether the petitioners should be permitted to have a RIO agreement or not because of pendency of the present application shall also be considered on the next date, if the parties fail to reach an agreement.

While posting the matter under the same head on 3 November, the tribunal said that GTPL will have to pay the dues as per the interim order for the extended period for which it has got protection.

On 5 September, the tribunal had directed GTPL to pay Rs 3.70 crore plus taxes for the month of August and September for getting signals from IndiaCast. For D1 GTPL Cable Net, the amount was Rs 12.5 lakh plus taxes.

In the previous hearing, IndiaCast had taken a stand that they have neither extended the placement agreement which existed till 31 March nor they have any intention of entering into any placement agreement with the petitioner.

GTPL had also submitted that it wanted to back out from the subscription agreement which was extended up to 31 August after realising that IndiaCast is not willing to enter into any placement agreement.

Source:

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Airtel Digital HD Recorder / Kerala Vision Digital TV
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