The ministry of information and broadcasting (I&B), under the initiative of ease of doing business, has simplified licence renewal process for existing television channels.
Under the new system, broadcasters can renew by paying the annual permission fee up to 60 days before the due date. Post the payment, broadcasters will be allowed to continue with uplinking or downlinking of their channel for a further period of one year.
“The idea is to expedite the process for issuing fresh licences and renewal of licences in case of existing TV channels. For that we are considering taking several steps.
“For example, in case of issuing new licences the joint secretaries of home ministry and I&B ministry can meet and discuss various factors to speed up the process,” I&B minister Venkaiah Naidu said.
The initiative by the ministry is expected to provide a major relief to broadcasters. A total of 963 channels and teleports are expected to benefit from the move. “This is a very progressive decision and it automates the process of renewal,” said Raj Nayak, CEO, Colors, a Hindi general entertainment channel from the house of Viacom18 — a joint venture between Viacom Inc and Mukesh Ambani-owned Network18.