SC sets aside order asking Yash Raj Films to pay for song exclusion in ‘Fan’ movie | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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SC sets aside order asking Yash Raj Films to pay for song exclusion in ‘Fan’ movie

Apr 22, 2024 11:00 AM IST

NCDRC ordered Yash Raj Films Pvt Ltd to pay ₹10,000 plus litigation costs to a consumer aggrieved by the absence of the song “Jabra Fan”

The Supreme Court on Monday set aside a National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission’s (NCDRC) order in 2020 requiring Yash Raj Films Pvt Ltd to pay 10,000 plus litigation costs to a consumer aggrieved by the absence of the song “Jabra Fan” in the Shahrukh Khan-starrer “Fan”.

Yash Raj Films challenged the NCDRC’s decision. (X)
Yash Raj Films challenged the NCDRC’s decision. (X)

A bench of justices PS Narsimha and Aravind Kumar examined the legal issues of whether a promotion will create a relationship between a customer and a service provider and if removing content from a promotion will provide someone the right to compensation.

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The top court in September 2021 stayed the Commission’s order while issuing notices to the Central Board of Film Certification and the complainant, a teacher, while hearing Yash Raj Films’ appeal challenging the NCDRC’s decision.

The complaint arose when the consumer, Afreen Fatima Zaidi, watched the movie “Fan” with her family after seeing promos featuring the song “Jabra Fan,” only to find it missing in the film.

Zaidi sought compensation and direction to air the promos with a disclaimer about the song’s exclusion. The production house argued that Zaidi was not a consumer and that the song’s absence had been publicly disclosed before the movie’s release. While the district consumer forum dismissed her plea, the Maharashtra consumer commission in 2017 ruled in her favour, ordering Yash Raj Films to reimburse the complainant for 10,000 in compensation as well as 5,000 for litigation costs.

In its 2020 decision, the NCDRC held that the practice of including a song in the promo of a film shown widely on TV Channels but excluding that song while exhibiting the movie constituted an unfair trade practice.

Rejecting Yash Raj’s contention, the Commission said: “Though it is claimed that the producer and actor of the movie had declared publicly that the song which forms part of the promo would not be a part of the movie, the said disclosure, even if it was made, would not be sufficient since it is not necessary that a person who watches the promo containing the song would also happen to see the interview given by the actor/producer of the movie.”

In addition, the NCDRC stated that it could not understand why the song was included in the trailer but not in the film when it was shown in theatres unless the producer was trying to trick the audience into thinking the song would be included in the film.

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