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Indian government pledges free TV dishes in Jammu and Kashmir

The Indian government has said it will provide 150,000 free satellite TV dishes to people living in remote areas of Jammu and Kashmir to enable them to watch the DD Free Dish platform.

The Information and Broadcasting Secretary, Apurva Chandra, made the announcement during a visit to the area. He said the dishes would be provided in areas where a cable service was not available.

DD Free Dish TV is a service operated by India’s public TV broadcaster, Doordarshan. It has no subscription fee and requires only a one-time investment to purchase a set-top-box and a small dish with accessories.

It carries not only Doordarshan’s channels but private TV channels who pay to use the platform.

Mr Chandra highlighted the importance of “free of cost services” to the public, and commended the Doordarshan centre in Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, for fulfilling its duties efficiently despite “many challenges in the past”.

He said the centre represented local culture and traditions through its programmes, reaching the people with authentic information.

Jammu and Kashmir lies in the north of the Indian subcontinent and is part of the larger Kashmir region, which has been the subject of disputes between India and Pakistan, and India and China.