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TRAI seeks explanation from Telangana MSOs over blocking of two news channels

MUMBAI: The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has sought explanations from multi-system operators (MSOs) in Telangana regarding blocking of news channels TV9 and ABN Andhra Jyothy.

TRAI has asked the MSOs to clarify by 11 August whether the two channels were blocked on their network and how they were in compliance of the regulation while doing so.

The Telangana MSO Association had in June decided to switch off the two Telugu news channels for their alleged anti-Telangana stand. The two news channels were blocked for a couple of days.

“It is brought to the notice of the authority that cable TV operators providing services in the state of Telangana have blocked the TV channel namely TV9 and ABN Andhra Jyothy from 16th June 2014,” read the TRAI notice to MSOs.

The authority further stated that the regulatory framework stipulates that no cable TV service provider switch off signals of a broadcaster without giving a three weeks’ notice and specifying the reason for disconnection.

The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) had also sought a report from the Telangana government on the blocking of the channels following complaints by the managements of TV9 and ABN Andhra Jyothy.