The Delhi High Court on Monday issued notices to Star India Pvt Ltd and three others on a petition seeking stay of the proposed resumption of 'Kaun Banega Karorpati' (KBC) with Bollywood heartthrob Shahrukh Khan as its new anchor in place of super star Amitabh Bachchan.
A Bench of Justices Mukul Mudgal and JP Singh asked Star India Pvt Ltd, Union Ministry of Communication, Director General of Monopolies and Restrictive Trade Practices Commission and Bharti Tele Venture Pvt Ltd to respond to the plea by January 10, 2007, the next date of hearing.
The order came on an application moved by one Anuj Kumar Bhati, who requested the court to stay the resumption of the popular television programme until his earlier petition alleging certain irregularities in KBC-2 was decided.
Bhati's counsel A Guneshar Sharma also urged the court to stay any competition for selecting candidates to participate in the programme proposed to resume with Shahrukh Khan as anchor, in place of super star Amitabh Bachchan.
Pointing out that his client's earlier petition alleging certain irregularities in the process for selection of participants was still pending, Sharma submitted that Star India Pvt Ltd could not have announced resumption of KBC without prior permission of the court.
He further said that the court had last issued notices on March 8 to the parties on his earlier petition and application for stay of the programme - KBC-2 that was yet to be decided.
In that petition, Bhati, who participated in KBC-2, had sought stay of further recording and/or telecast of KBC-2 and/or any of its variants.
The latest application for stay follows November 26 declaration by Star India that they were going to start KBC with Shahrukh Khan as anchor in place of Big B and that the recording of the programme would commence in December 2006 and the telecast in January 2007.
Terming the announcement of resumption of the programme as mala fide, contemptuous and an attempt to overreach the court, the petitioner said since the matter was sub-judice, Star India should have sought prior permission of the court before going ahead in the matter.
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