TRAI concedes to broadcasters' demand, bars 'placement fee'

Every multi-system operator (has) to display, in his electronic programme guide, all the channels offered by him, in the same genre in which a particular channel has been indicated by the broadcaster and one channel shall appear in only one genre

New Delhi: Conceding to a major demand of broadcasters, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has barred multi-system operators (MSOs) from demanding 'placement fee' from channels in lieu of placing them in select slots, reports PTI.

In a statement, TRAI said it had issued amendments to the Interconnection Regulations which were earlier issued on 30th April, and applicable to digital addressable cable TV systems.

"Multi-system operator (are) not to demand any placement fee from the broadcaster," the TRAI statement said.

"Every multi-system operator (has) to display, in his electronic programme guide, all the channels offered by him, in the same genre in which a particular channel has been indicated by the broadcaster and one channel shall appear in only one genre," the statement added.

Broadcasters will also have to declare the genre of their channels, TRAI said in its statement. These genres may be either news and current affairs or infotainment or sports or kids or music or lifestyle or movies or religious/devotional or general entertainment (Hindi) or general entertainment (English) or general entertainment (regional language), it added.

By banning the placement fee, TRAI has accepted the demand of several leading broadcasters, who wanted the telecom regulator to take this step.

These channels had earlier protested TRAI's decision to allow MSOs to charge 'carriage fee'. Carriage fee is the money charged by MSOs and cable operators from broadcasters to carry their channel to the viewer, on their network.

The telecom regulator also tried to make the system under which carriage fee is charged more transparent, under its amended regulations.

TRAI specified that "the reference interconnect offer of a multi-system operator submitted to the Authority to contain the basis on which the carriage fee payable by the broadcaster has been determined."

The TRAI guidelines will be applicable to MSOs and channels which will switch over to providing digitalised cable services.

The government has planned to digitalise the cable service in four metros by 30th June, and in the rest of the country by December 2014.


Cricket match fixing in IPL too, alleges a TV channel

According to the channel, its operation revealed that spot-fixing is not only prevalent in IPL but also that first class matches are fixed and women played an important role in match-fixing

New Delhi: A TV channel has claimed to have blown the lid off "murky deals" in the Indian Premier League (IPL) among players, organisers, owners and big guns of Indian cricket, prompting the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to warn that stringent action will be taken if the report is found to be true, reports PTI.

The channel, India TV, claimed it had done a sting operation in which many players confessed on hidden camera they get much more than their prescribed auction under the table.

According to the channel, its operation also revealed that spot-fixing is not only prevalent in IPL but also that first class matches are fixed and women played an important role in match-fixing.

Superstars of Indian cricket and even an international player, who is a captain of one of the teams, are involved in fixing the matches, the channel said in a statement.

Asked about the sting operation, BCCI chief N Srinivasan said, "We will ensure that the integrity of the game is protected. BCCI believes in the integrity of the game. We will take the strictest possible action. We will have to have the tapes and the moment we see it, whoever is the player, we will take very very strict action."

"If there is any truth in it... It is a fact that we will take strictest action. Even if it means suspending the player immediately. But (that has to be) based on some evidence and fact, for which I have asked the COO of IPL Sundar Raman to request for the tape," he said.

Srinivasan said he has asked the Governing Council of the IPL so that in the morning there will be a tele-conferencing of the governing council to go into this matter. We will act to show that this is not tolerated."

"IPL, we believe is clean. We have got the Anti- Corruption Unit covering it. They are the in-chanrge of the security. We have got Ravi Swami, who was heading BCCI's Anti-Corruption Unit to take it up for us."

"People can make allegations. But if there is any shred of evidence, we will take action.

The channel claimed that an IPL player confessed that he was getting Rs1.45 crore from its owner whereas he was in the Rs30 lakh slab.

It named an IPL player, claiming he had bowled a no-ball in last year's first class match on the insistence of the channel's reporter. He had also assured to change his team in future if he was paid Rs60 lakh, the channel said.

Another player demanded Rs10 lakh for bowling a no-ball in an IPL match, it said.

The channel said a pattern has emerged where a particular bowler pitches easy deliveries and there are dropped catches.

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Low fares on MakeMyTrip, Cleartrip, Expedia...? Not really

Booking through MakeMyTrip, Cleartrip, Expedia, etc? Booking a ticket from the airline’s website could give best deals —cheaper than those available on travel sites

First look at the advertisements of the online travel portals such as Cleartrip, MakeMyTrip, Expedia, etc, surely gives an impression of hassle-free air ticket booking experience along with some special discounted rates. While many of would consider using the aggregator’s website hoping to save some bucks, the reality is quite different. Instead, booking a ticket from an airline’s own website could give best deals with fares—even cheaper that available those on these travel websites.  

Take the case of Deepak Verma (name changed). Mr Verma is a regular flyer to Kolkata from Mumbai. Recently he planned his monthly trip and selected to book his return ticket (25th May Mumbai-Kolkata and 28th May Kolkata-Mumbai) choosing a Jet Airway’s flight. The total cost of the available tickets came to Rs16,075. However, this time after learning that Jet Airways runs a 5%-10% discount offer built into tickets booked via their own website, called “LoFares”,  he decided to check if would really get some discount. Surprisingly, he did find lower fares and booked the tickets paying Rs14,324. Mr Verma saved more than Rs1,700 which he otherwise would have paid to

Moneylife checked the variations in flight prices using different routes. It was noticed the websites also offer different rates on same route and flight. For instance, for the same route and flight which Mr Verma chose, MakeMyTrip offered the tickets for Rs15,034, cheaper by Rs1,751 compared to Cleartrip; Expedia offered the same fare as Cleartrip. However offered at Rs15,951 but during the process a message popped up stating that the old fare was Rs14,063 which was increased.

Similar fares were noticed on checking the prices for Jet Airways’ Mumbai-Chennai (1st June) and Chennai-Mumbai (3rd June). While a Jet Airways flight JetConnect offered the return fare for Rs11,066, travel portals offered slightly higher fares. Both Cleartrip and Expedia offered a return fare at Rs11,762 while MakeMyTrip charged Rs11,440., however, priced it at Rs10,492 which was increased to Rs11,491 during the process.  

While cross-checking out possible price discounts on various routes, Moneylife also compared fares by airlines, other than Jet Airways, with ticket booking portals. In most cases the fares were almost the same.

For example, a return Mumbai-Goa trip from 22nd-24th May, using GoAir would cost Rs7,273 according to the airline’s own fare. It was same for travel portals as well. Similarly, for a Mumbai-Delhi return trip from 5th-6th June using IndiGo, the ticket price was Rs11,039, which was same for Cleartrip and Expedia. However MakeMyTrip offered the tickets at Rs10,792.

So the next time you book your ticket make sure you visit the airlines’ own website first and then these websites. You might also be lucky as Mr Verma.




4 years ago

Sometimes i observe that fares on compnay websites ar emore than portals. looks like comnaies pass on less proce quota to portals to sell at higher rates ..i have written this to feedback to Kingfisher and course no answer from them..

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