The Maharashtra Cable Operators Federation (MCOF) has requested the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) to defer the implementation of the new tariff order (NTO 2.0) due to the crisis and fear created by Coronavirus.
MCOF has pointed out in a letter today to the authority, that normally in the course of business, LCO business entails many visits to customer premises for collections of post-paid subscription and on- site service support. The federation added that NTO 2.0 will necessitate more frequent interaction with subscribers firstly to refit them into New Basic Plan options and secondly to enable them to make the right choices of Pay Channels and Packages.
“We therefore request you to kindly defer the implementation of NTO 2.0 until things settle. The interim period would also be useful for more interactions with and by the Industry and wholehearted participation by each Value chain Member. We also request that the deferment be made applicable to DTH and IPTV Operators too so as to ensure Status quo across the Sector. This is without prejudice to the rights of stakeholders who have legally challenged the Tariff regulations and the outcomes are subjudice at this stage,” the letter stated.
The letter also added that the field executives will be exposed to many subscribers and vice versa and thus having a higher probability of turning into a passive carrier, if not a patient himself, which is ill- advised in the days of Coronavirus spread. At the present scenario which has created a panic among people, almost everyone staying quarantined and is resorting to social distancing to control the spread.
It has also added that the problem is compounded in large cities where the cable executive often travels and aboard public transport to reach his office . It mentioned that while the future situation is not predictable , the psychological need for minimal interaction would be hard to overcome.
MCOF president Arvind Prabhu told Indian Television dot com, that they are awaiting response from the regulatory body. The Association of Film and Video Editors has also decided to stop the shooting of TV serials, web series, and so on from 19 to 31 March 2020.