Successful DTH auction

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AFTER a lengthy process of about fifteen hours, Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) successfully auctioned the first ever three DTH licenses for Rs 14. 694b. Full credit to this endeavour goes to PEMRA’s Chairman Absaar Alam who since assuming the office is putting in all his efforts for development of country’s media on modern lines.
It is, however, lamentable that digitisation process which would not only bring billions of rupees to the national exchequer but also ensure quality entertainment, information and education to masses across the country, some elements have moved the Supreme Court against the auction of DTH and the PEMRA would have to wait for decision of the apex court to award contract to the successful bidders. In our view, there is no genuine justification for opposing digitisation of the media as we are already lagging behind introducing this latest technology when compared with other regional countries. Whilst developed countries are using this technology for many decades, other regional countries like Bangladesh, India, Maldives and Nepal have been using DTH technology for many years, which provides channels to customers without any cable connection. The opposition of cable operators and PBA is also surprising as in a recent meeting with Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, the two had promised not to oppose DTH auction. Concerns of cable operators that their customers would switch over to DTH following introduction of this latest technology are also uncalled for. Firstly, introduction of new technology could not be held hostage on the concerns of any quarter and secondly, if the cable operators would keep their services comparatively low than DTH service providers, they could manage to keep a smart customer base for themselves. In this modern era, we could not remain aloof to latest technology and our plea is that we should not resist or create any impediments in the way of early introduction of latest technology that in fact is vital to better compete with rest of the world.