If you are a south Delhi resident yet to migrate to the set-top box-ruled conditional access regime, you will miss all the cricket action in Australia.
In order to ensure a faster take-up of set-top boxes and to fasten CAS rollout, the cable network companies have decided not to show the third Test match between India and Australia starting on December 26 in Melbourne to consumers without set-top boxes.
This is a change from their stand at the time of the second Test, when the companies decided to show the last day of the Test to all subscribers.
Meanwhile, Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and Information and Broadcasting Minister Ravi Shanker Prasad decided in a meeting to set up a dedicated consumer court to settle cable-related disputes and appoint sub-divisional magistrates as nodal regulators for CAS implementation.
"We would expect all stakeholders to settle any corporate rivalry. Failure to address these issues adequately would certainly jeopardise the implementation of CAS in other areas," Prasad said.
The responsibilities of both the Centre and Delhi government have also been finalised with the latter taking care of the law and order issues such as theft of signals and consumers grievances and Centre monitoring implementation issues as well as problems between the cable network companies and the broadcasters.
The government also made it mandatory for cable operators to offer consumers an option of taking set-top boxes on rent.
A notification of the information and broadcasting ministry said: "Every consumer must be given a choice of either purchasing a set-top box outright or acquiring it through rental scheme which will entitle him to a refund should he not wish to use the set-top box for any reason."
The Centre has also asked Delhi Chief Secretary Shailaja Chandra to call a meeting of all deputy commissioners and explain the government's position on CAS.
It has asked the cable network companies to inform the consumers about various pricing schemes as well as the availability of set-top boxes.
Prasad said it was agreed at the meeting on Tuesday that cable operators should not force set-top boxes on consumers.
As per the notification, cable operators and cable companies must ensure that a consumer is given a refund on set-top boxes with out any questions.
"Cable operators must keep in mind that consumer-friendly measures such as easily affordable rental schemes and quick refunds are essential to the smooth implementation of CAS. Any failure would certainly jeopardise the implementation of CAS in other areas," he said.
A no-win situation
- Sheila Dikshit and Ravi Shanker Prasad decide to set up a dedicated court to settle cable-related disputes.
- Sub-divisional magistrates to be the nodal regulators for CAS rollout.
- The option of taking set-top boxes on rent has been made mandatory.
- Cable operators should not force set-top boxes on consumers, says the government.