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Guidelines for Uplinking and Downlinking of Satellite Television Channels in India, 2022”

GS paper 2

Syllabus: Government policies and interventions for development of various sectors and issues arising out of them.

 

Source: PIB, The Hindu

Context:

  • The Union Cabinet has approved the “Guidelines for Uplinking and Downlinking of Television Channels in India, 2022”.

 

Key Highlights:

  • Ease issue of permissions to the companies/ LLPs registered in India for Uplinking and Downlinking of TV Channels
  • Setting up of Teleports/ Teleport Hubs
  • Use of Digital Satellite News Gathering (DSNG)/ Satellite News Gathering (SNG)/ Electronic News Gathering (ENG) systems
  • Uplinking by Indian News agencies
  • Temporary uplinking of a live event
  • Companies/LLPs having permission to uplink and downlink a channel: They may undertake public service broadcasting (except where it may not be feasible) for a minimum period of 30 mins in a day on themes of national importance and of social relevance.
  • Mandatory encryption: The TV Channels uplinking in frequency bands other than C band are mandatorily required to encrypt their signals.
  • Net worth requirement for Companies/LLPs holding permissions, to be as per the Guidelines at the time of renewals.
  • Security deposit: To ensure payment of dues.

 

Themes for Public service broadcasting:

  • Education and spread of literacy
  • Agriculture and rural development
  • Health and family welfare
  • Science and technology
  • Welfare of women
  • Welfare of the weaker sections of society
  • Protection of the environment and of cultural heritage
  • National integration.

 

Importance of Guidelines:

  • Ease compliance: New Guidelines ease compliance for Television Channels
  • No prior Permission for Live Telecast of Events
  • Uplink foreign channels: Indian Teleports may uplink Foreign Channels
  • Obligation to telecast content in National/Public Interest

 

Advantages emanating from the revised guidelines:

  • Ease of compliance for the permission holder:
    • Only prior registration of events to be telecast live would be necessary.
      • No permission for live telecast of events.
    • No prior permission for change of language or conversion of mode of transmission from Standard Definition (SD) to High Definition (HD) or vice versa
    • In case of emergency, for a company/ LLP with only two Directors/ Partners, a Director/ Partner can be changed
      • Subject to security clearance post such appointment.
    • A company/LLP can use News gathering equipment other than DSNG, such as optic fiber, Bag back, mobile, etc.
      • No separate permission would be necessary.
    • Ease of Doing Business:
      • Specific timelines for grant for permission
      • Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) entities can also seek permission
      • A news agency can get permission for a 5 year period(one year at present)
      • A channel can be uplinked by using facilities of more than one teleport/ satellite(one teleport/satellite at present)
    • Simplification and Rationalization:
      • One composite set of Guidelines
      • Structure of the Guidelines has been systematized
      • Penalty clause: Separate nature of penalties have been proposed for different types of contraventions(uniform penalty at present).

 

Insta Links:

Content regulation on TV, other platforms

 

Mains Links:

Q. Has digital illiteracy, particularly in rural areas, coupled with lack of Information and Communication Technology(ICT) accessibility hindered socio-economic development? Examine with justification.(UPSC 2021)