Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O Panneerselvam has written to Union Finance and Information and Broadcasting Minister Arun Jaitley to expedite licensing process. (Press Trust of India)

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O Panneerselvam today urged Union Finance and Information and Broadcasting Minister Arun Jaitley to take steps to issue the "Digital Addressable System" licence to the Tamil Nadu Arasu Cable TV Corporation without any further loss of time.

In a letter to Mr Jaitley, a copy of which was released to the media, Mr Panneerselvam urged him to issue the DAS licence to the state-run Corporation so as to enable the government to "adhere to its commitment to provide inexpensive and quality Cable TV services to the people of Tamil Nadu, particularly the poor and the middle class."

AIADMK MP and Deputy Speaker of Lok Sabha M Thambi Durai and Udumalai K Radhakrishnan, Chairman, Tamil Nadu Arasu Cable TV Corporation handed over the letter to Jaitley today in Delhi.

Recalling the revival of the TACTV after assumption of office by AIADMK in 2011, he said how it had "freed the people from the clutches of the erstwhile Multi System Operators who were fleecing customers by charging Rs. 150-250 per month for a bouquet of just 30-70 channels."

However, the state-run TACTV provides a package of 100 channels to subscribers at Rs. 70 per month, the lowest rate anywhere in the country, he said.

TACTV applied to the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting for the DAS licence in 2012 for operating in Tamil Nadu including the Chennai Metro Area. Also, other steps like providing set top boxes were taken.

The Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court had also passed orders in 2012 December that the process for issue of licence to TACTV may go on and the license issued.
Former Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa had taken up this issue and wrote letters to the then Prime Minister. On June 3, in a memorandum to Modi this issue was highlighted by her.
"Despite all these efforts, the DAS licence is yet to be issued by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. "Therefore, I request you to kindly have this matter reviewed at the earliest and arrange to issue the DAS license to the Tamil Nadu Arasu Cable TV Corporation Ltd without any further loss of time," he appealed.