| 02 Jun 2023
Govt cancels licences for FM channels in Agartala and Itanagar

NEW DELHI: Positive Radio Pvt. Limited based in Noida and Guwahati has lost its licence to establish, maintain and operate private FM radio broadcasting channels at Agartala and Itanagar with effect from 25 October.

The Information and Broadcasting Ministry in an order said it had noted that broadcasting of Agartala and ltanagar stations had been discontinued from 26 April last year, which is which is more than six months after the Grant of Permission Agreement.

On such revocation, it is informed that as per clause 25.3.5 of the GOPA Phase-II, "In the event of revocation of Permission, the Permission holder will lose the One Time Non-Refundable Entry Fee (OTEF)".

The Grant of Permission Agreements (GOPAs) of FM Radio Phase-11 were signed by the company with the Government for establishing, maintaining and operating FM Radio Stations at Agartala and Itanagar on the terms and conditions mentioned therein.

The Government came to know that the Permission Holder had stopped operation without prior approval of the Grantor and sought status from Broadcasting Engineering Consultants India Limited (BECIL) which is the system integrator and the authorized agency of the Grantor for monitoring FM Radio transmission by Private FM operators.

BECIL said the Permission Holder had stopped broadcasting in Agartala and ltanagar since June 2015. Subsequently, the Grantor also sought confirmation from the Permission Holder with regard to this and was informed that on 16 October last year that “due to unavoidable circumstances broadcasting of these channels was discontinued by them with effect from. 26 April 2015.

A show cause had been issued on `6 November last year to the Permission Holder under the provisions of clause 25.3.6 of GOPA Phase-II directing it to explain as to why permission granted to them should not be revoked, but no reply was given. A second show cause notice to the Permission Holder as a last opportunity but there was no reply.

Under Clause 25.1.2 of GOPA Phase-II, it is provided that the grantor may revoke the Permission, if transmission from the channel is discontinued for more than six months for whatever reason.