Within the span of 20 days, two films starring Hrithik Roshan have faced allegations of copyright infringement. On Wednesday, filmmaker Akashaditya Lama sent a notice to Mohenjo Daro producers, UTV Films and Disney India, director Ashutosh Gowariker and Hrithik Roshan, seeking a stay on the film’s production and release. He has alleged that the makers “stole the story for their new film from him”.
The period drama rolled earlier this year and is already in the last leg of shooting. It is supposed to release in August 2016. According to a report in Mumbai Mirror, Lama has alleged that he came up with the idea in 1995 and developed it into a script. In 2003, he gave the script to his friend Jaswinder Saluja who is an associate of Ashutosh. On his request, Jaswinder sketched the script to Ashutosh who did not show any interest in it at that time.
Lama, who has written a number of TV shows, had registered his script under the Copyrights Act with Ministry of Human Resources Development in 2007. He re-registered the same script online in February 2010 with the title Mohenjodaro with the Ministry of Human Resources Development and the Department of Higher Education under the Copyright Act. Two days later, he also registered the same script with the same title with the Film Writers Association, Mumbai.
Lama made a play out of the same script, called Mohenjodaro, which was shown across India. He was also about to make a film on the same subject but now said that his financier backed out after Ashutosh announced his film.
He alleged that he has been trying to contact the Lagaan filmmaker ever since he found out that his original script has been lifted. According to the report, the filmmaker’s lawyers have refused that Mohenjo Daro’s script is copied.
On March 8, Hrithik’s another film which is being produced by his father Rakesh Roshan, received a legal notice from model-actor Sudhanshu Pandey over alleged copyright infringement.