The court also issued notice to StarDen, with whom NDTV has signed up a new channel distribution agreement, switching over from MSM.A double bench, headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra, issued notice to NDTV as well as StarDen, a joint venture between Star and Den Media, directing them to file replies.
The court listed the matter for next hearing on March 18.On December 22, a single member bench of Justice S Muralidhar had upheld the order of the Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT), which supported NDTV's decision to terminate the agreement with MSM.
"This Court finds no ground having been made out for interference with the impugned order of the TDSAT. The writ petition is dismissed," Justice S Muralidhar had said.
TDSAT had rejected the plea of channel distributor MSM Discovery to restrain NDTV from terminating distribution and marketing agreement between the two, and entering into a fresh contract with rival firm StarDen.
MSM Discovery had approached TDSAT seeking to restrain NDTV from terminating distribution rights of its channels -- NDTV 24x7 (English news channel), NDTV Profit (business news channel), NDTV India (Hindi news channel) and NDTV Good Times (lifestyle channel).
MSM Discovery had submitted that NDTV had "unlawfully" terminated the channel distribution agreement and collaborated with rival distributor StarDen.
TDSAT had said that MSM Discovery failed to show as to why NDTV could not terminate their contract. It said that if NDTV terminated the contract wrongly, then MSM could claim damages for the breach of contract.
NDTV had terminated the channel distribution agreement with MSM on December 13 after issuing a public notice and it entered into a fresh alliance with StarDen.
MSM Discovery is a JV between Multi Screen Media and Discovery Communications.
MSM Discovery and NDTV had entered into a distribution agreement in 2003. The contract was renewed in 2005 and 2009 for a fixed term fee and it was to expire on March 31, 2012.