The Indian Performing Rights Society Ltd. v. Gauhati Town Club & Anr.

Indian Performing Rights Society v. Gauhati Town Club & Anr.

CS(OS) No. 559 of 2010 before the Hon’ble High Court of Delhi at New Delhi

Date of Decision: 30th January, 2013

FACTS

The Plaintiff is a Company and a Registered Copyright Society. The Plaintiff was established to monitor, protect and enforce the rights, interest and privileges of its members comprising of authors, composers and publishers of literary or musical works. The Defendant No. 1 organised a live concert at Defendant No. 2 stadium located at Guwahati. At the said live concert the Defendants communicated the literary and musical works and/or permitted their place to be used for communication of the said literary and musical works, the copyright in which vested in the members of the Plaintiff. As per the Plaintiff said act constitutes infringement of Copyright in the literary and musical works of the members of the Plaintiff. Therefore, the Plaintiff was seeking a decree for permanent injunction restraining the Defendants from infringement of Copyright along with relief of rendition of accounts and damages.

The Defendants failed to file their written statement. The Plaintiff moved an application under Order 8 Rule 10 for pronouncement of judgment/decree against the Defendants. However, the Court asked the Plaintiffs that how a decree could be passed for rendition of accounts or damages against the Defendants under Order 8 Rule 10; to which the counsel for the Plaintiff stated that in case the Hon’ble Court is willing to pass a decree for injunction under Order 8 Rule 10, then the Plaintiff will not press for relief of Rendition of Accounts and Damages.

ISSUE

Whether the relief of Injunction can be granted in exercise of powers under Order 8 Rule 10 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 or the grant of relief of injunction also requires the Plaintiff to lead any evidence.

BASIS

In order to decide the said issue the Court inquired from the Plaintiff whether any similar injunctions have been granted to the Plaintiff.

In response, the counsel for the Plaintiff provided certain instances where similar injunctions were granted to them earlier. They were as follows:

  • The Indian Performing Rights Society v. Badal Dhar Chowdhry; RFA(OS) 32 of 2010 dated 22nd December, 2011.
  • Indian Performing Rights Society v. Debashis Patnaik; 2007(34) PTC 201
  • Indian Performing Rights Society v. Mr. R. Krishnamurthy; CS(OS) No. 2422 of 2007 dated 8th November 2011.

On basis of the above and more specifically on the basis of the judgment dated 22nd December, 2011 passed in Indian Performing Rights Society v. Badal Dhar Chowdhry; RFA(OS) 32 of 2010, wherein it has been observed that none can violate the provisions of the Copyright Act. The relief of injunction sought by the Plaintiff against the Defendants is nothing but a direction to the defendants to abide by law and which the Defendants in any case are expected to.

HELD

This Court does not require the Plaintiff to lead any evidence before finding the Plaintiff entitled to the decree insofar as for relief of injunction and consequently the Defendants were injuncted/restrained from performing or communicating the Plaintiff’s repertoire to the public or from organizing or providing the premises, organizing musical shows/events where Plaintiff’s repertoire is performed or communicated to the public, without obtaining a license from the Plaintiff.

Author: Ankit Rastogi

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