Board not authorised to issue circular, says copyright society | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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Board not authorised to issue circular, says copyright society

The Indian Performing Rights Society (IPRS) has moved the Bombay high court challenging a circular issued by the Stage Performance Scrutiny Board (SPSB) de-recognising the copyright society and directing auditoriums not to pay any fees to them.

mumbai Updated: Nov 30, 2011 01:05 IST
HT Correspondent

The Indian Performing Rights Society (IPRS) has moved the Bombay high court challenging a circular issued by the Stage Performance Scrutiny Board (SPSB) de-recognising the copyright society and directing auditoriums not to pay any fees to them.

The sole copyright society in the country, which has more than 2,500, members, had challenged the circular issued by the SPSB on August 10, 2011, contending that the board had no authority or jurisdiction to issue such a circular.

The circular states that for stage performances across the state, only suitability certificate from the board was required.

The circular, purportedly issued after receiving several complaints against the copyright society further grants liberty to auditoriums to lodge FIRs or written complaints to the board if any stage performance was obstructed by the copyright society.

In its petition filed through advocate Sandeep Marne, the society has stated that it is an NGO, registered with the Charity Commissioner since 1969, and only aims to protect copyrights of its members.

Marne submitted that the board had nothing to do with the copyright issue, and in case of any disagreement, a show organiser could approach the Copyright Board, which deals with the matter of copyrights of various performances.

He pointed out that there would be no control over copyrighted artistic works if such directive was to be issued, and it would amount to open theft.

The society has further stated that it had put up rates for licences of various songs on its website, which auditoriums are required to pay and get the suitability certificate from them. “This has been going on for years,” the petition states, adding, “Auditoriums have stopped approaching us for the NOC after the circular was issued.”

Acting on the petition, a division bench of justice PB Majmudar and justice Mridula Bhatkar directed the SPSB to file their response in this matter by December 8.