Our Bureau

New Delhi, Aug. 8

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India has proposed that each service provider should provide one Set-Top Box (STB) apart from any alternative tariff package in Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata, where Conditional Access System (CAS) will be implemented from December 31 this year.

TRAI has specified two options for the STB and would choose one after consultations. The first option provides for a monthly rental scheme with a security deposit. In this scheme, it is proposed that the monthly rent for each STB be fixed at Rs 30 with a refundable security fee of Rs 999. Further, it has been proposed that no monthly rentals would be payable after five years, when the STB would become the property of the subscriber.

The multi-system operator or cable operator shall be entitled to make deductions from the refundable security deposit at the rate of Rs 12.50 per month or part of the month for which the cable television subscriber on return of the STB in working condition at any time up to a period of five years from the date of hiring or leasing of the STB, the TRAI draft order states.

The second option that is being called Standard Tariff package for STB provides for a monthly rental of Rs 45 with no security deposit. In both the options, there would be no payment for installation and activation charges or for the smart and viewing cards and maintenance costs, the TRAI has said.

The Authority has also invited suggestions on any other option as a STB.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated August 9, 2006)
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