New Cable TV Rules: Assam Cable Operator Commits Suicide; TRAI Says Old Long Term Plans Are Valid

LCOs should be provided with help and assistance. What are we missing here?

Cable operators under pressure?
Cable operators under pressure?

In an unfortunate incident, new cable TV rules imposed by TRAI took life in Assam. A cable operator committed suicide, and before he took this extreme step, he blamed the new Cable TV rules for this decision.

What exactly happened here?

Assam Cable Operator Suicide: New Cable TV Rules Culprit?

Prabhas Paul alias Chinu was a 55-year old cable operator from Tezpur, Assam. On March 1st, he committed suicide at his home.

As per GuwahatiPlus, the suicide note found beside Prabhas clearly mentions the trauma faced by him due to the strict implementation of the new Cable TV Rules.

The note mentions that Ruben (Bolen) Saikia didn’t provide him support for migrating to the new Cable TV rules, and this is the reason he is taking his life.

Prabhas used to run Tezpur Cable Network, which is a LCO or Local Cable Operator in Tezpur since last 23 years. Tezpur Cable Network is associated with Axom Cable Communication (ACC), which is a joint venture of Siti Cable. Hence, Axom Cable Communications was the MCO or Multiple Systems Operator here.

It seems that Ruben was associated with Axom Cable Communications, and didn’t provide technical or logistical help to migrate to the new regime. Most probably, Prabhas was losing customer base, and this cause financial, and mental strain.

As per GuwahatiPlus report, several other cable operators too have threatened to commit suicide over the new Cable TV rules.

Our Opinion: Taking one’s life is an extreme, sad decision. We don’t know much about this story, but ups and downs in business, any business for that matter, is normal. Blaming new Cable TV Rules for this suicide would be a gross injustice, but sadly, that is the fact here. We are pursuing this story, and keep you updated.

TRAI: Long Terms Plans Are Valid

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India or TRAI has once again stated that customers who had opted for long term plans under old cable regime should be provided the services, as long as the plan is valid.

However, in case the customer wants to select channels under the new Cable TV regime, then he or she should be allowed to do so.

TRAI’s statement said: “The Authority further reiterates that subscribers who have taken long term packs will continue to avail the services for the contracted period. However, they have the freedom to choose the channels of their choice under the new regulatory framework and in case if they exercise this option, money for the remaining period shall be adjusted for their future use.”

We had reported earlier as well, that TRAI has informed all DTH and Cable operators to continue providing services under long term plans, and refund money in case they opt for newer plans under the new Cable TV regime.

We will keep you updated, as we receive more updates.

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