Friday December 01, 2023

DTH project again in doldrums

January 30, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The much anticipated Direct to Home (DTH) project again in the doldrums as Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) has delayed two licences for security reasons while local firm Shahzad Sky Private Limited yet not start function last year to pay 50% advance payment and remaining payment would pay in 10 years installments.

The firm also challenged the 20% advance tax in the court. Around 5 million viewers watch dramas through DTH that billions of rupees transferred online or other sources to India.

On February 11, 2020, the date of licence will expire and all amount would be confiscated as per the Pemra Section 35. The Pemra sent many notices to Shahzad Sky but did not receive positive reply.

When The News contacted Director General Licensee Pemra (DTH) Dr Mukhtar said DTH project is vital for Pakistan and its people. “We contact with the firm and they assured they will work soon. If the firm requests more time for start of the DTH, the Pemra will consider on their request.”

Project Director Shahzad Sky Pvt Ltd said, “The firm is working on DTH but we are facing letter of credit (LC) facility and many hurdles to start DTH in Pakistan.”

It is pertaining to mention here that successful bid announced at Rs4.898 billion for single licence. All three winners will get DTH licence for this same amount. The Pemra, as a whole, will bag Rs14.694 billion as a result of this bidding.

Process had started DTH bidding after Supreme Court issued a short order allowing it to hold the auction. Apex court, however, said that outcome of bidding will be conditional with High Court’s detailed order.