• 100 ‘illegal’ Pakistani channels

    100 ‘illegal’ Pakistani channels

    Written by Chris Forrester

    Sunday, 11 April 2010 10:14

    Pakistan’s media regulator (PEMRA) is taking action against more than 100 “illegal and unregistered” satellite TV channels.

    A report carried by BBC Monitoring says that PEMRA has started pursuing channel operators. “These illegal and unregistered channels were not only violating PEMRA laws but also incurring huge financial loss to the government exchequer,” said a press release. “These channels have blocked the space, which according to law, is a legal right of local satellite TV channels registered by PEMRA since 2002,” says the report.

    This action, says the report, was taken in a bid to create space for legitimate satellite TV channels, which had obtained licences and paid their respective dues to the Authority. PEMRA being a regulator is steadfast to promote its licensees and this initiative has been taken to support the local broadcast industry.

    Cable TV networks in Pakistan are operating on analogue technology, restricting their channel capacity to 90. PEMRA has granted 82 licences for satellite TV channels and 28 permissions for Landing Rights.

    “These licensed channels are facing exploitation from cable distribution networks either by not carrying them on their respective networks or by tuning them at the last numbers having poor signal quality. In order to increase their subscription, cable TV operators, generally, prefer foreign satellite TV channels, which on the contrary are illegal for distribution purposes.”