Lahore High Court has declared the DTH auction invalid and in their detailed decision, today has asked PEMRA to start the whole process again, starting from inviting new applications for the auction.
GEO TV had recently challenged the PEMRA’s regulations in Lahore High Court which excluded broadcasters from bidding and a special exemption given to foreigners to have management control. As per LHC’s decision, broadcasters will now be allowed to take part in the bidding process.
PEMRA previously had stated that the broadcasters wouldn’t be allowed in the bidding process rendering it a conflict of interest. In November, PEMRA had given the approval to 12 companies out of 16 for taking part in the bid for DTH license auction.
The 15-hour bidding process for the said license in response to Supreme Court’s order allowing PEMRA’s to hold the auction resulted in Mag Communications, Shahzad Sky and Startimes Communications obtaining 15 years long license for providing DTH services in Pakistan with PKR 4.898 billion bid each.
Direct to Home service surely will bring HD quality to the TV screens with more choices of channels and improved features. The cable operators had also created raised their concerns over DTH auction, and now this news can bring a little joy to those poor souls. If this new order is not challenged in Supreme Court, then we are sure to see another auction/marathon for DTH license.