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Cable operators in Pune under collectorate scanner - Mr.Bhat - 12-08-2010

The district collectorate’s entertainment department has appointed a special squad to ascertain the authenticity of information provided by cable operators about the number of connections and the control rooms.

The drive, which starts next week, is aimed at fulfiling the targets of the zero-pending initiative which was reviewed by district collector Chandrakant Dalvi last week. Dalvi had held a meeting of all the departments and had asked the tehsildar-level officers to clear all files received till September 30, 2010, by the end of this year.

The entertainment department has appointed special squads on the instructions of Dalvi to take action against cable operators providing false information or misleading the administration, thereby resulting in loss of revenue towards entertainment tax, the official said.

The entertainment tax department has collected Rs8.85 crore from the DTH connections and Rs4.94 crore from the cable operators, which is below the department’s expectation. If the operators are found furnishing false information, their control rooms would be sealed, he added.

There are 2.18 lakh cable connections and 4.77 lakh DTH connections in the district despite the fact that there are roughly 15 lakh households.

Data on DTH connections is far more difficult to get. The entertainment tax office at the district collectorate in Pune receives information about the number of TataSky connections and revenue deposited in the Mumbai collector’s office. The entertainment department has no record of how many people have connections through satellite dishes.