Delhi High Court rejects Amazon's plea against telecast of India v New Zealand matches by private cable and DTH operators

The TDSAT had passed an order on Thursday directing Prasar Bharti to supply DD Sports channel in an unencrypted mode effectively allowing its broadcast on all DTH platforms.
Amazon Prime Video and Dish TV
Amazon Prime Video and Dish TV

The Delhi High Court Friday rejected a petition by Amazon challenging an order of the Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) which effectively allowed broadcast of India-New Zealand cricket matches by all private cable and Direct To Home (DTH) operators through DD Sports channel [Amazon Seller Services Pvt Ltd v Dish TV India Ltd & Anr].

Single-judge Justice Yashwant Varma dismissed the plea today. A detailed order is awaited.

Amazon had acquired the exclusive media rights from New Zealand Cricket for broadcasting the international cricket matches organised by the New Zealand Cricket Board. These rights will be owned by Amazon till April 30, 2026 and the matches are being telecast on Amazon Prime Video.

The matches are also being shown on Prasar Bharti owned DD Sports as Amazon licensed it to the government owned channel.

However, it was Amazon’s case that the rights granted to Prasar Bhart are restricted for retransmission only on Prasar Bharti’s DTH platform – DD Free Dish -- and not others like Dish TV.

TDSAT passed an order on Thursday on Dish TV's plea ordering Prasar Bharti to supply DD Sports channel in an unencrypted mode. This means that the matches can be seen on DD Sports on other DTH operators as well.

Amazon approached the court arguing that the TDSAT order diluted its (Amazon) rights as all private cable and DTH operators can retransmit the signal shared by them with Prasar Bharti.

“Completely misapplying the scope of Section 8 of the Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995, which is an obligation on private cable operators to carry Doordarshan channels, the Ld. TDSAT has exalted the obligation of cable operators into a right which they can seek and enforce against Prasar Bharati as well as impinge upon third party Intellectual Property Rights,” the plea argued.

It added that the order would effectively legitimise the infringement and piracy of Amazon’s rights. 

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