Wiretel had on 15 February 2013 moved the TDSAT after the broadcasters and aggregators refused to enter into interconnect agreements on the ground that the MSO is providing digital cable service in areas where DAS has not been notified.
The MSO, which has a DAS licence to operate in Andhra Pradesh, has a digital headend in Mangalagiri town of Guntur district. The broadcasters and aggregators contended that the area where the headend is located falls under Phases III and Phase IV of the DAS regime where the DAS regulations are yet to be enforced.
However, the tribunal, relying on DAS regulations, pointed out that cable services with addressable systems can also be provided in areas other than those notified under DAS regime. Rather, the broadcasters are mandated to publish RIO for the same.
“We are, therefore, unable to agree with the contention of the respondents that the petitioner cannot provide signals by its digital headend (which is an addressable system) at Mangalagiri in Guntur district to areas which are not yet under DAS regime,” the tribunal noted.