The Telecom Disputes Settlement & Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) has directed Sony Pictures Networks India and Tata Sky to find an amicable solution in four weeks.
The broadcaster and the direct-to-home (DTH) company are currently embroiled in a tiff over revenue-share and pricing of channels.
“We direct both the parties to sit across the table and try to work out a mutually acceptable negotiated agreement within a period of four weeks from today. If required the parties may seek extension of the period,” said a TDSAT order. The matter is next listed for November 11, when the outcome of the fresh round of negotiations between the two companies will be considered.
Earlier this month, Tata Sky dropped 22 channels of Sony from its platform and also asked existing subscribers to give a missed call to continue watching 10 channels of the Sony bouquet.
Sony moved TDSAT seeking interim relief while petitioning that Tata Sky should be asked to continue carrying all its channels in the interest of its existing subscribers. However, TDSAT refused to grant it any interim relief.
Tata Sky’s counsel submitted to the court that the negotiations failed because Sony was seeking ₹1,700 crore in contract fees from the DTH company despite no longer having Indian Premier League broadcast rights.
Under per older terms, Sony was getting approximately ₹800 crore in contract fees from Tata Sky.
Reference Interconnection Offer is a document which specifies the terms and conditions mutually agreed by the cable or DTH service provider and the broadcasters before carrying their channels on their platform.