Saturday, 4 December, 2021

Continue crackdown on illegal IPTVs

People usually watch TV for entertainment, news and views as well as for gathering knowledge. During bygone days, it was very popular to all classes of people. With the passage of time, lots of people have turned away from the traditional cable or satellite TV services as they allegedly cannot satisfy modern day TV viewers who want more freedom and choices. They are gradually turning towards alternative channels. Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) service is one of them. It is an online-based service that provides TV programming and other video content opposed to traditional cable or satellite signals.

The BTRC-authorised ISP operators of IPTV service are allowed to show the broadcasts of satellite TV channels approved by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting through the internet to their subscribers. But, in course of time, unauthorised IPTVs have mushroomed all over where unscrupulous people are illegally running its broadcasting, thereby earning lots of money. To cite a single example, the name of so-called IPTV JoyJatra TV can be mentioned here which illegally ran its broadcasting since 2018. As per press reports, Rab members have been able to nab two top officials of JoyJatra TV for their involvement in "extorting money" from people by broadcasting fabricated news.

The two JoyJatra TV officials were also allegedly engaged in defaming important personalities and creating panic and confusion in the public mind. After the incident, the BTRC woke up from its slumber and took an abrupt action by shutting down 59 unauthorised IPTV services. We laud the prompt initiative of the BTRC, but such action should have been taken much earlier. However, it is better late than never. But, the actual number of IPTVs is much larger than just the above 59.

The single action of the BTRC will not suffice; all law-enforcement agencies including police and Rab should get united to launch a massive crackdown on the unauthorised IPTVs in a coordinated manner. Then and only then, we believe, the crime that the dishonest people are committing in society in the name of IPTVs will come down to a good extent.