On Wednesday, the Supreme Court refused to stay the Bombay High Court’s order on most provisions of the Tariff Orders issued by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) on NTO 2.0. The apex court bench comprising the Chief Justice of India NV Ramana, Justice Surya Kant, and Justice Aniruddha Bose agreed to issue notice to TRAI. It is said that interim relief cannot be considered at this stage.
The constitutional validity of Section 11 of the TRAI Act related to regulator’s powers and functions over television broadcasters was upheld by a division bench of the Bombay High Court on June 30. The court also upheld TRAI’s 2017 and 2020 Tariff Order(Rules) and regulations. At the same time, set aside one of the twin conditions in the 2020 Order according to which the MRP of an a-la-carte channel could not be more than 1/3rd the maximum rate of a channel in the bouquet.
The Indian Broadcasting and Digital Foundation (IBDF) and various other media houses, namely TV18, Zee, Sony, TV 18, Star India, and Film and Television Guild of India Ltd, had challenged the judgment by the High Court of Bombay. The apex court has listed the matter for further hearing on September 7 to consider interim order.