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  1. #1
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    Default TataSky asks court to blackout Sun; stay order copy awaited

    NEW DELHI: TataSky has moved an application with TDSAT today saying that Sun TV has neither complied with the sector tribunal's order of 2 April to stream its signals to the former, nor has it produced a copy of the stay order that it says it has procured from the Madras High Court on 5 April.

    Sun had alleged that TataSky was aware of the stay, and yet had given out a report to saying it would move the court for blacking out Sun from all platforms for non-compliance of the court's orders, threatening to take legal action against the DTH player.

    When asked if Sun had produced the stay order, TataSky's legal mandarins told "The TDSAT order had been issued on Tuesday. If Sun TV had indeed procured the HC stay, as they claim, they had from Thursday to this morning to produce it to us because it directly concerns us.

    "They had not produced any such order in all these days. This morning just before we were going to the court, the Sun official called us and said they have procured the order, and we said we have no problem, let them produce the order in the court."

    TataSky sources said that at the court today, Sun official Vivek Sibbal was present and when TataSky counsel informed the court of its desire to move the application for penalising Sun TV, they argued that either the latter should produce the order or be penalised.

    At the time of filing this report, TataSky counsel confirmed that Sun had not yet produced any copy of the order.

    Asked about TataSky's statement that neither had they been told before this morning that Sun had procured a stay order, nor did they give a copy to TataSky, Sun TV legal head Anil Kumar stated: "Ramji Srinivasan is misleading the court and the media is suppressing the facts, because TataSky's lawyer was there at the Chennai court and knew the stay had been issued."

    As to why Sun had said that Sibbal would hand over the copy to TataSky by this afternoon, Kumar denied that anything of that nature had been said at all. "We are yet to get a certified copy of the order," he said.

    Asked why something as urgent as a stay order copy had not been issued by the court, which is normally done, Kumar said: "It does not happen like that in Chennai HC. First of all, there were three holidays from Friday.

    "Besides, here the practice is that the judge will dictate the order, which will be typed and then signed by the judge and then we shall get it. We are still waiting for the copy of the order. TataSky can also get their copy by applying for it in the prescribed manner."

  2. #2
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    NEW DELHI: TataSky will on Monday (9 April) pray before the Telecom Disputes Settlement Appellate Tribunal the Sun TV be disallowed from being aired in any cable or DTH platform.

    Reason: The South Indian broadcast major's refusal to comply with the court's order to stream signals of all its channels to the News Corp backed DTH operator on a non-discriminatory basis.

    The court had issued an order to this effect and the last date of compliance was over today.

    "Sun had on the last day of hearing even withdrawn its review petition, which means it does not dispute the order, and even then, they have not complied with it, so we are going to press for this penalty," Ramji Srinivasan, senior counsel for TataSky told today.

    Srinivasan pointed out that the court in previous instances of non-compliance (for instance in a different between two other parties case on data access) levied a fine of Rs 1 lakh, and there have been instances of day-to-day fines being ordered.

    Asked whether TataSky has written to Sun lately on this, Vikram Kaushik, TataSky CEO, told "My writing to them or otherwise means nothing, because this is a court order and has to be complied with. In any case, we have lots of subscribers in the south and they have been waiting for long for this to happen."

    Attempts to contact a Sun spokesperson for a comment on these developments proved futile till the time of filing this report.

    On 19 March, TDSAT had passed an interim order asking Sun TV to stream its signals on an a la carte basis to TataSky, at 50 per cent of the cable charges.

    The order meant that Sun was obliged to give TataSky the channels that the DTH operator wanted, and the price Sun would have to offer it was at 50 per cent of the price for the same channels that it received from the MSOs in the cable TV field.

    On the last day of hearing of the review petition filed by Sun on the interim order, the latter had raised several issues, especially demanding that TataSky should pay Sun for its entire subscription base, and other questions.

    The court had been upset and accused Sun of "taking us round and round" without complying with the order, and had strictly said that the order must be complied with by 7 April.

    The court had also said that it would either dismiss the petition or Sun could withdraw it, and the broadcaster had opted for the latter course of action.

    Srinivasas says this withdrawal meant Sun had accepted the order and would have to comply with it, which it has not done so far.



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