IPRMENTLAW WEEKLY HIGHLIGHTS (APRIL 1-7)

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PM NARENDRA MODI BIOPIC: 

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            Following the dismissal of the PIL filed before the Bombay High Court, Satish Gaikwad filed a SLP before the Supreme Court against release of the film on PM Narendra Modi. The Apex court had on April 4 agreed to hear on April 8 the SLP which sought deferment of the biopic’s release till the completion of the upcoming Lok Sabha polls, alleging that it was designed to “manipulate, influence and impress viewers and voters”. As per latest reports, the Supreme Court on April 5 refused urgent listing of the plea seeking stay on the release of the film.

 

The Bombay High Court had vide its order dated April 1, 2019 disposed of the PIL and held that it is for the Election Commission of India to deal with the issues as and when brought before it.

On April 1, 2019 the Delhi High Court, dismissed a plea seeking a stay on the release of the film ‘PM Narendra Modi’, until the results of the 2019 Lok Sabha Elections are declared. A Division Bench of Chief Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice Anup Bhambhani refused to entertain the Public Interest Litigation seeking a stay on the release of the film ‘PM Narendra Modi’, after being informed that the Gujarat High Court, as well as the Election Commission, was already seized with the issue.

The Delhi High Court observed “The question as to whether the movie in question is fit for public exhibition is an issue which has been considered by the Central Board of  Film Certification (‘CBFC’) in accordance to the statutory provision of the Cinematograph Act, 1952 and once the CBFC has cleared the movie for public viewing, we cannot interfere in the matter by exercising our extraordinary jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution until and unless some violation of statutory provisions is pointed out.

That apart, the only ground canvassed in the writ petition is that release of the movie in question would have adverse effect on the ongoing election process; and thus it constitutes violation of the Model Code of Conduct for the ensuing elections. These aspects are purely within the domain of the Election Commission/respondent No.1 and, therefore, it is available to the petitioner to approach the Election Commission, if so advised; and we cannot issue any mandamus to the Election Commission in this regard. Our attention has been invited to an order passed by the Gujarat High Court in the case of Bhavik Ranjit Samani vs. Varesh Sinha and Ors., W.P.(PIL) No. 234/2017 wherein also similar prayer was rejected and it was directed that it is open to the petitioners to pursue their representation before the Election Commission.”

As per reports the Indore bench of the Madhya Pradesh High Court and the Allahabad High Court have also rejected similar pleas seeking ban on the release of the Film.

Reports further state that the Election Commission has decided to consult its legal experts before taking a final decision on whether to restrain the release of the biopic on Prime Minister Narendra Modi till the Lok Sabha polls are over. “The matter is now in the Supreme Court where it is listed for April 8. Since the EC has been made a party, the commission will discuss the situation with its legal experts on way forward,” a functionary explained. Sources said there is a strong view in the EC that it should not restrain the release of the biopic on the prime minister and should leave it to the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) to take a call on the issue.

PM Narendra Modi, a biopic on the current Prime Minister of India, is reportedly scheduled to release on 12th April 2019.

SC REFUSES URGENT LISTING OF PETITION CHALLENGING ANDHRA PRADESH HIGH COURT’S STAY ON RELEASE OF RGV’S FILM ‘LAKSHMI’S NTR’ CLOSE TO ELECTIONS

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On April 1, 2019 the Supreme Court declined request for urgent listing of a Special Leave Petition filed against the order of High Court of Andhra Pradesh in which it had stayed the release and exhibition of Telugu film ‘Lakshmi’s NTR’  based on the life of Telugu Desam Party (TDP) founder N T Rama Rao.

 

The Film directed by Ram Gopal Verma is based on the life of former Chief Minister of undivided Andhra Pradesh, N.T. Rama Rao. The biopic about the legendary actor and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) founder is narrated from the perspective of his second wife, Lakshmi Parvati. The film showcases the political party’s landslide victory in the 1994 elections, the revolt and internal party coupled by NTR’s son-in-law Chandrababu Naidu in August 1995 and NTR’s death a few months later. It was scheduled to be released on March 29, 2019.

However, on March 28, 2019, the Division Bench of Justices A.V. Sesha Sai and U. Durga Prasad Rao of Andhra Pradesh High Court ordered a stay on the release of the film. The Bench was hearing a PIL filed by Telugu Desam Party and its members.

In the petition, it was contended that the film was highly derogatory towards TDP. They submitted that the director of the film had raised an online plebiscite requesting the public to express their opinion as to whether the film would influence the ensuing elections. According to the petitioners, if the exhibition of the film is allowed it would interfere with the democratic way of conducting elections in a fair and transparent manner.

Claiming that the film was a calculated move to manipulate election results, the petitioners called for the intervention of Election Commission of India to ensure free and fair elections.

Taking into consideration the submissions made by the petitioners, the High Court observed that the screening of the film at a crucial stage before the elections will affect the prospects of one political party, and held that it was necessary for the court to view the film for a “better appreciation of the contents”. The court directed the producer to make arrangements for the screening of the Film at 4PM on April 3, 2019, and stayed its release until then.

Aggrieved by the order, the producer of the film Rakesh Reddy moved the Supreme Court, contending that the High Court has exceeded its jurisdiction in passing the order and that the judges are not supposed to hold movie screenings and decide whether they ought to be released or not. It was also submitted that the film has clearance from the Central Board of Film Certification.

However, the apex court declined the request for urgent listing of a Special Leave Petition.

MADRAS HC DIRECTS BAN ON MOBILE APP TIKTOK

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The Madras High Court (Madurai Bench) has passed an order to prohibit the download and use of popular mobile video-sharing app, TikTok

 

Justices N Kirubakaran and SS Sundar passed an interim order to this effect on April 3, 2019, issuing the following directions:

  • The Government is directed to prohibit downloading of Tik Tok Mobile App.
  • The Media is prohibited from telecasting the videos made using Tik Tok Mobile App.
  • The Government has to answer whether the Union of India will enact a statute, like the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, enacted by the United States, to prevent the children becoming cyber/online victims.

The Court passed the order after expressing concern that the app hosts inappropriate content, including pornography, which is available for access to children. The Bench has also expressed its concerns that minors are also exposed to strangers online through TikTok.

The matter will be taken up next on April 16.

POLICE COMPLAINT FILED AGAINST URMILA MATONDKAR FOR CALLING HINDUISM MOST VIOLENT RELIGION OF THE WORLD

Image source: here As per reports, a police complaint has been filed against actor-turned-politician Urmila Matondkar by Bharatiya Janata Party’s Suresh Nakhua on April 6.

 

The complaint alleged that Matondkar hurt the sentiments of Hindus with her comments on a television show recently in which she allegedly said that “Hinduism has become the most violent religion in the world”.

Urmila Matondkar, who is contesting on a Congress ticket from Mumbai North Lok Sabha constituency, in an interview with a news channel reportedly said that Hinduism, which was known for its tolerance, has become the most intolerant of them all under the Modi government.

MOHANLAL’S NEW POSTER LANDS LUCIFER IN TROUBLE: KERALA POLICE FILE COMPLAINT WITH CM AND CBFC

 

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Malayalam superstar Mohanlal’s new poster has landed his latest outing Lucifer in trouble with the Kerala Police Association (KPA) filing a complaint with Chief Minister Vijayan Pinarayi and Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC).

 

 

As a part of its promotion, Mohanlal released a new still and poster of Lucifer in which the superstar is seen keeping his leg on the chest of John Vijay, which has played a top cop in the Prithviraj Sukumaran directed film. This has not gone down well with Kerala police, who have raised an objection to the portrayal of men in uniform in the promotional content of the film.

DELHI POLICE SHO UPSET WITH HIS PORTRAYAL IN NETFLIX SERIES ‘DELHI CRIME’, PLANS TO TAKE ACTION

Image source: here Inspector Anil Sharma is upset with his “derogatory” portrayal as a “dumb and slow” officer in Netflix series “Delhi Crime” about the December 15, 2012 Delhi gang-rape. Anil Sharma, who was the station house officer (SHO) Inspector and claims to have been commended by his seniors for his painstaking probe that put all the accused behind the bars, is planning to take legal action against director Richie Mehta and his team.

 

Inspector Sharma said his portrayal as dumb, slow, one who shrugs off responsibility on jurisdiction issue, is not trusted and often been scolded by then DCP, Chhaya Sharma, in the series is absolutely wrong.

Director Richie Mehta, however, claims that there was “a disclaimer at the end of each Delhi Crime episode” and that the “names have been changed, and some of the events, dialogue and chronology have been fictionalized for dramatic purposes”.

IPRS DISTRIBUTES ROYALTY OF OVER INR 20 CRORES

Image source: here On 4th April 2019, Chairman of Indian Performing Right Society Limited (IPRS) Javed Akhtar distributed royalty of more than INR 20cr (Rupees Twenty crores only) to composers, song writers and publishers.

 

The Indian Performing Right Society (IPRS), India’s only Government recognised copyright society tasked with administering rights in musical compositions and lyrics associated with music on behalf of its lyricist, composer and music publisher members successfully completed the annual royalty distribution for this quarter.

PVR FILES COMPLAINT WITH SEBI AGAINST RONNIE SCREWVALA’S ALLEGATIONS

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Pursuant to Regulations 30 of SEBI (Listing Obligations and Disclosure Requirements) Regulations, 2015, leading multiplex operator PVR on 4th April had filed a complaint with SEBI against film maker, Mr. Ronnie Screwvala for indulging in “propagating false information and making misleading statements in media and social media

 

This comes after Screwvala  filed a complaint with the Competition Commission of India (CCI) against the four leading multiplex operators — PVR, Inox Leisure, Carnival Cinemas and Cinepolis India, for charging discriminatory virtual print fee (VPF) from movie makers.

In its complaint to SEBI, PVR termed Screwvala’s statements as “slanderous and malicious allegations” with respect “to the matter that he has allegedly filed before the Competition Commission of India”.

NAMO TV IS AD PLATFORM LAUNCHED BY DTH SERVICE PROVIDERS: I&B MINISTRY TO EC

Image source: here The Information and Broadcasting Ministry is learnt to have responded to an Election Commission notice on NaMo TV on Friday, saying it is an advertisement platform launched by DTH service providers which does not require government nod. The Ministry has said that NaMo TV is not a regular channel and it does not figure in the official list of approved channels.

The Election Commission had issued a notice seeking a report from the ministry on NaMo TV, launched just weeks ahead of the general election, after opposition parties, including the Congress, asked the poll body to direct the ministry to suspend the channel as it was violative of the Model Code of Conduct.

The EC will take a call on whether it violated the model code after going through the documents the ministry files.