Cable operators resume transmission
LAHORE, August 26: The cable operators on August 26 temporarily called off their strike and resumed transmission of a number of channels to millions of viewers.
The cable operators called off their strike after an announcement of a meeting with Federal Information Minister Sheikh Rashid in a couple of days.
The top management of various local and international channels contacted with the cable operators and assured that they would discuss their complaints with the ministry concerned.
Lahore Cable Operators Association Chairman Mohammad Amir said that they were pressed by the heads and representatives of various channels including ARY, UNI Plus, Geo, Indus Vision, BBC and CNN who assured them that they would take up the issue with the government for early redress of their genuine problems.
He said that they have called off their strike temporarily. A spokesman for Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority welcomed the step and said that it would help resolve their ‘genuine’ problems within the parameters of PEMRA Ordinance and as per policy of the government.
“We will mediate between the channel providers and cable operators in determining rates for foreign channels and also ask the WAPDA authorities and civic bodies to extend cooperation to cable operators,” the PEMRA spokesman said. The Cable operation is a budding industry in Pakistan and PEMRA wants to promote this, the Spokesman said.
Irnran Nadeem, General Secretary of All Pakistan Cable Operators Welfare Association, said that the cable operators have suspended the strike and hoped that their grievances would be addressed. He maintained the table operators are not pressing for resuming transmission of banned channels.
The cable operators representative outlined major problems including high rates of foreign channels available on decoders, difficulties in availing poles facilities of WAPDA, the absence of a uniform policy of civic bodies and relay of ads on VCDs.
The PERMA will hold a public hearing shortly on the issues of fixing rates of foreign channels and listen to the views of all stakeholders including channels providers, cable operators and subscribes.
Source: The Nation