Media Pro has claimed that as a counterblast against the disconnection notices issued by Media Pro against DEN networks for non-signing and non-payment of outstanding dues towards Asianet and Asianet Plus Channels in terms of Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) Regulations, Kerala-based Media & Cable Operators Association (MCOA) is making false and misleading statement that Asianet channel has turned Free to Air.
Media Pro has alleged that MCOA is deliberately doing this with a view to avoid payments of subscription fee for these channels and execute a fresh agreement. Further, in retaliation to the public notice, MCOA has displaced Asianet channel and removed the Asianet Plus channel from the analogue line.
Asianet has been a pay channel since January 30, 2010, Media Pro maintains, adding this has been categorically informed to all viewers by the broadcasters Asianet Communications Ltd (ACL) via their public notice dated December 29, 2009 as per TRAI Regulations.
Initially, these channels were distributed by Asianet Communications and thereafter by Media Pro Enterprise India with effect from October 1, 2011.
In a release issued, a senior official of Media Pro stated, “Taking advantage of a technical error that has occurred on the TRAI website, which has inadvertently not mentioned the name of ‘Asianet’ channel in the list of channels distributed by Media Pro in the Rate Card published by the TRAI on May 23, 2012, MCOA is creating confusion by making false statements to the operators and viewers that the channel has become a Free to Air channel.”
This official further confirmed that Media Pro has sent letters to TRAI to make necessary changes on its website to reflect the correct position and that TRAI has clarified the same shall be done shortly.
“The operators had signed subscription agreements for both Asianet and Asianet Plus channels, which have now expired and we have been negotiating with the operators for renewal of the same for some time now. We will try our best to eradicate the problems; we are continuously running the on screen displays across our networks to inform the viewers regarding non-payment of outstanding dues by the concerned operators,” the official added.