The Information and Broadcasting (I&B) Ministry in Month of June 2013 has cancelled licenses of 61 channels, as they were not under operational within one year of granting permission.
The step to cancel license was taken after considering the non-compliance of uplinking and downlinking norms by TV Channels.
Information and Broadcast Ministry has conducted a comprehensive monitoring exercise since October 2012. It is worth mentioning here that nearly 867 channels have been given permission for launch in the country so far.
As per I&B ministry, earlier there were no roll-out rules and obligations and broadcasters used to seek extension once they got permission to launch channels. But with the introduction of amendments in the norms in December 2011, it is now made mandatory for channelsare now to be on air within a year of being granted permission.
The monitoring exercise basically involved reviewing mandatory adherence to guidelines by these channels, and was the first such big exercise conducted by the Ministry.
While non-news channels are required to submit a performance bank guarantee of 1 crore Rupees on the other hand, news and current affairs channels need to submit a performance bank guarantee of 2 crore Rupees and we have forfeited this guarantee for these 61 channels.
Private television channels are also required to notify any change in shareholding pattern in the company within 15 days. They also need to take the Ministry’s prior approval if any directors are changed in the company.
The Ministry, after a comprehensive review, has issued letters to all broadcasters seeking disclosure of shareholding patterns and details of their board of directors. It is now set to take action against nearly 22 such companies, which failed to respond to the Ministry’s letters.