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Govt cancels licence of Shri News

MUMBAI: The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) has cancelled the licence of New Delhi-based Softline Media’s Hindi news and infotainment channel Shri News.

Softline Media had received the uplinking licence from the MIB in November 2006. The channel, however, was launched in 2012.

The company, which was incorporated in 1997, has one director and two additional directors. Ishwar Prakash Gupta is the director while Sharad Kesarwani and Rishi Arora are additional directors. The company’s authorised capital and paid-up capital are Rs 10 crore and Rs 9.62 crore respectively.

With the tagline ‘Damdaar Khabar’, the channel had a basket of programmes related to health, women, youth, real estate, automobile, entertainment and religion to serve all kinds of audience.

In April 2016, the company had won a slot on Doordarshan’s Freedish on a pro-rata basis.

Shri Media Ventures, a sister concern of Softline Media, publishes the Hindi daily ‘Shri Times from Lucknow’.

Both the companies are part of Shri Infratech, which has real estate projects in several cities in Uttar Pradesh.

As reported earlier by TelevisionPost.com, the MIB had cancelled the licence of 13 TV channels in January. This included eight news and five non-news channels. The companies whose licences were cancelled included Neon Solution, NDTV Ltd, Pompash Fiscal Services, Satlon Enterprise and Triveni Media.

The MIB had shown the door to Satlon Enterprises’ Gujarati news channel Sandesh News (earlier Satlon News). Sandesh News is owned by Falgun Patel, who is also the main promoter of Gujarati daily ‘Sandesh’. Patel is also related to former Gujarat chief minister Chimanbhai Patel.

NDTV’s cancelled licences included Granada TV and Trace Sports HD. The company was distributing the two channels in India and South Asia. Granada TV is a general entertainment channel owned by the UK’s ITV while Trace Sports Star (earlier Trace Sports HD) is a sports lifestyle channel. The two channels were launched in 2012.

The ministry had cancelled five news licences—TML Voice of India UP, TML Voice of India Punjab/Haryana/Himachal Pradesh, TML Voice of India Rajasthan, TML Voice of India Madhya Pradesh, and TML Voice of India, and two non-news channels, TML Voice of India Music and TML Voice of India Lifestyle, of New Delhi-based Triveni Media.

Kanpur-based Pompash Fiscal Services’ licences under the name Channel C Uttar Pradesh and Channel C that were cancelled. The licence of Neo Solution’s travel channel Voyages Television was also cancelled.

The MIB has cancelled permission of 169 TV channels, as on 28 February 2017.

The total permitted private satellite television channels in India stand at 892, up from 889 a month ago. This includes 391 in the news and current affairs space and 501 in the non-news and current affairs category. Until 31 January, the channels having valid permission in India included 392 news channels and 497 non-news channels.

In February, the MIB issued four TV channel licences while cancelling the licence of a channel in the news and current affairs category.

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