Bollywood producers suit an abuse of process, intends to interfere with Article 19(1)(a): Rahul Shivshankar, Navika Kumar to Delhi High Court
Navika Kumar, Rahul Shivshankar, Delhi High Court

Bollywood producers suit an abuse of process, intends to interfere with Article 19(1)(a): Rahul Shivshankar, Navika Kumar to Delhi High Court

The production houses seek directions to several media houses to curb the irresponsible, derogatory remarks made against the film industry during the sensationalised coverage of the Sushant Singh Rajput case.

The Delhi High Court today issued notice in the application filed by Bennett Coleman & Co and Times Now anchors Rahul Shivshankar and Navika Kumar for rejection of the suit filed by 38 Bollywood production houses against them (The Film and Television Producers Guild of India & Ors vs ARG Outlier Media Pvt Ltd & Ors).

In their suit, the production houses (plaintiffs) seek directions to several media houses to curb the irresponsible, derogatory remarks made against the film industry during the sensationalised coverage of the Sushant Singh Rajput case.

Bennett Coleman, Shivshankar and Kumar (applicants) have asserted that the suit is nothing but an abuse of process.

The application reads,

"..the suit is an abuse of process because the Plaintiff(s) intend to interfere with the fundamental rights of the Applicant(s)/Defendant(s) protected by Article 19(1)(a) on causes with which the plaintiffs have no concern."

It is argued that under Section 41 of the Specific Relief Act, no injunction could be issued at the instance of a party that has no personal rights.

The applicants have further argued that the plaintiffs have claimed the defamation of an "unidentifiable" group of persons, and are merely acting as a front for "certain other individuals" who have chosen not to approach the Court.

It is also contended that the Delhi High Court lacks the territorial jurisdiction to entertain the issue, and that the suit suffers from mis-joinder of cause of action and parties. The suit also lacks necessary and proper parties and proper valuation, it is said.

The Court had issued summons in the suit last year while ordering news channels including Times Now to ensure that no defamatory content against Bollywood personalities is displayed on their channels or uploaded on their social media handles.

The application is filed through Tandon & Co. The matter will be heard next on March 23.

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