Row over downloads for film | india | Hindustan Times
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Row over downloads for film

india Updated: Mar 25, 2008 02:03 IST
Urvi Mahajani

While publicity is welcome for any big-banner release, Yash Raj Films may not have bargained for this.

Onix India, a service provider that helps distribute downloading material, has dragged the company and Hungama, the service provider in whose favour download rights were awarded, to court.

The film in question, Tashan, stars Kareena Kapoor and Saif Ali Khan and the dispute is over rights for downloading its music, wallpapers and caller tunes.

Justice DY Chandrachud on Monday, while refusing to grant any relief to Onix, has kept the matter for hearing on March 31. The suit shows the growing popularity of download agreements and the huge sums of money involved, said an advocate.

Yash Raj Films entered into a joint venture with Onix last year, giving the latter download rights for its music, wallpapers and caller tunes.

However, Yash Raj Films terminated the contract alleging breach of contract, sought appointment of an arbitrator, and entered into a contract with Hungama on March 12. Following the agreement, Hungama made the material available for download.

Darius Khambatta, counsel for Onix, wants Hungama restrained from distributing the “downloading material”. But Raju Subramaniam, counsel for Hungama, said the material was already available in public domain. “Once the material is out, there can be no injunction on distributing as it cannot be called back,” argued Subramaniam.

Subramaniam even downloaded a song from Tashan on his cellphone to prove that the material was available online and hence could not be recalled. Firoze Palkhiwalla, counsel for Yash Raj Films, said they had already released the music CDs and dispatched them to retailers.