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Network18, UTV, ETV, Hungama set to withdraw signals from Reliance DTH

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Network18, UTV, ETV, Hungama set to withdraw signals from Reliance DTH

Signals of all Network18, UTV Network and Hungama channels will be disconnected from Reliance Big TV, the DTH arm of Anil Dhirubhai Ambani (ADA) Group. This was announced via an advertisement released jointly by Indiacast UTV Motion Pictures Distribution and Ushodaya Enterprise, which was carried in all major newspapers on July 25, 2013.

The reason for disconnection, as stated by the networks, is non-payment of fees by Reliance DTH. As per the ad, the signals will be stopped post July 30, while the signals of all ETV channels (Eenadu TV) will be disconnected post August 10.

Interestingly, Mukesh Ambani had recently divested part of his stake in Eenadu TV and sold it to Network18 Group. RIL, through an independent trust, provides funding to the promoters of the Raghav Behl-led Network 18 and TV18 Group. In a way, Mukesh Ambani has a considerable stake in ETV and Network18.

On the other hand, ADA Group is owned by Anil Ambani.

If media reports and the advertisements are to be believed, then media could be another sector where the Ambani brothers could be on opposite sides. The brothers have earlier locked horns over business interests in sectors such as Telecom and Energy.

Officials from neither Indiacast nor Reliance DTH were available for comments at the time of filing this report.

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