The return of Sony Pal, Star Utsav, Zee Anmol, Zee Anmol Cinema, and Colors Rishtey which went live on DD Free Dish yesterday after winning MPEG-2 slots in DD Free Dish 45th E-Auction has left 2 MPEG-2 slots vacant on DD Free Dish after many FTA broadcasters exited the platform in the recent weeks. Out of the 7 MPEG-2 slots that were vacant at the time of DD Free Dish 45th E-Auction being held, 5 MPEG-2 slots were filled by the big broadcasters leaving 2 MPEG-2 slots vacant.
Prasar Bharati on Wednesday uploaded the updated channel list of DD Free Dish after the recent exits and additions which shows that 2 MPEG-2 slots remain vacant which could increase soon with Movie Plus and Manoranjan Grand struggling to pay installments to Prasar Bharati due to financial crunch caused by the pandemic.
The two FTA channels currently are saved by the interim order granted by TDSAT but could be on its way out if they fail to shell out the installments.
India’s only FTA DTH platform has seen multiple FTA channels exit it over the last few weeks with FTA broadcasters finding the relief offered by Prasar Bharati not feasible for them to continue on the platform.
ABZY Dhakad, Cinema TV India, Filmachi, Showbox, and 9X Jalwa have vacated their MPEG-2 slots recently. C7 and Satya which had earlier landed MPEG-2 slots didn’t aboard DD Free Dish due to financial difficulties with Superhit Broadcasting is now having a petition in TDSAT to save its Rs 1.5 crore participation fee. BDM has left DD Free Dish for now with Rishtey Cineplex replacing it.
BDM is likely to launch later this year with Viacom18 teasing the launch of its Bhojpuri Movie channel on the test run of BDM.
In MPEG-4 slots, ABP Ganga, JK 24* News, Enter10 Bangla, Sangeet Bangla, and 9X Jalwa have vacated their slots. DD Free Dish will be holding the MPEG-4 auction next week for allotment on an annual basis.
Zee Anmol, Zee Anmol Cinema, Sony Pal, Star Utsav, and Colors Rishtey recently entered DD Free Dish. Live Today, a Hindi News channel also went live on DD Free Dish platform on 1st June on a MPEG-4 slot probably on a pro-rata basis.
IN10 Media’s exit from the FTA DTH platform with Showbox and Filmachi withdrawn from the platform is expected to be followed by the broadcaster turning into a pay broadcaster soon with Epic Plus plans reportedly cancelled and replaced by Gubarre.
Separately, FUN TV rebranded as Shemaroo TV earlier in May followed by Blue owned by Goldmine Telefilms rebranded and unveiling its FTA Hindi Movie channel Dhinchaak Movies.
DD Free Dish has also updated the names of Doordarshan’s regional channel on its platform. DD Shillong is now DD Meghalaya, DD Imphal is now DD Manipur, DD Kohima is now DD Nagaland, DD Agartala is now DD Tripura, DD Aizawl is now DD Mizoram, DD Raipur is now DD Chattisgarh. DD Dehradun is now DD Uttrakhand, DD Ranchi is now DD Jharkhand, DD Hisar is now DD Haryana, and DD Shimla is now DD Himachal Pradesh.