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MIB grants 4 TV channel licences in Feb

MUMBAI: The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) has awarded four TV channel licences in February. The licences have been given to three companies —MSM Worldwide Factual Media, AETN18 Media and Shreya Broadcasting.

AETN18 Media, a 51:49 JV between TV18 and A+E Networks, has got a licence for History TV18 HD. The company currently operates factual entertainment channel History TV18 and lifestyle channel FYI TV18.

Shreya Broadcasting, which runs a Telugu news channel TV5 News, has got a non-news licence under the name Hindu Dharmam.

MSM Worldwide Factual Media, a 74:26 JV between Sony Pictures Networks India and BBC Worldwide, has got licences for Sony BBC Earth and Sony BBC Earth HD. In fact, Sony BBC Earth got launched on 6 March.


In January, the MIB had granted licences to Asianet Communications, VRL Media and Parshavnath Medias for Star Suvarna HD, Dighvijay TV Jai Paras TV respectively. While Star Suvarna HD and Jai Paras TV are non-news uplinking licences, Dighvijay TV is a news uplinking licence in multiple languages.

The ministry had also cancelled the licence of 13 TV channels including eight news and five non-news channels. The companies whose licences were cancelled include Neon Solution, NDTV Ltd, Pompash Fiscal Services, Satlon Enterprise and Triveni Media.

The MIB had shown the door to Satlon Enterprises–owned 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 CM 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, 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 names Channel C Uttar Pradesh and Channel C were cancelled. The licence of Neo Solution’s travel channel Voyages Television was also cancelled.

As on 28 February 2017, the MIB permitted 892 private satellite TV channels to operate in India. These include 391 news and current affairs channels and 501 non-news and current affairs channels.

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