Nepal Cable Television Association Takes Indian TV Channels Off Air to Protest Against Advertisement Bill
As per consumption patterns, Nepalese viewers prefer watching Indian TV shows like 'Kulfi Kumar Bajewala,' 'Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai' among many others for entertainment.
Stills from Kulfi Kumar Bajewala and Yeh Rista Kya Kehlata Hai, courtesy of Instagram
Indian television channels have been taken off air in Nepal for 24 hours in protest against a proposed bill which seeks to restrict foreign tv channels from broadcasting advertisements. Indian television channels such as Star Plus, Colors, Zee TV, Sony TV, Star Utsav are very popular in Nepal. Except news, Nepalese viewers prefer Indian channels for entertainment.
Kulfi Kumar Bajewala, Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai and The Kapil Sharma Show are some of the most popular entertainment channels preferred by Nepalese viewers. Internet and Digital Television Coordination Committee and Nepal Cable Television Association closed the distribution of foreign channels, broadcasting advertisements for 24 hours starting 3 PM on Monday which ended on 3 PM Tuesday.
If implemented, the Advertisement (Regulation) Bill, registered in Parliament by the KP Oli government, will restrict foreign television channels, mainly Indian channels, from broadcasting advertisements.
Indian broadcasters have already said that they cannot provide a clean feed to Nepal as it is economically and technically not viable. The cable operators have argued that the proposed policy will cause severe drop of their income as foreign television channels will not be available for distribution.
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