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John Doe order in Viacom 18 Motion Pictures v. Jyoti Cable Network and Ors.(movie Bloody Money)

by Jai Anand — last modified May 26, 2012 09:00 PM
This is the case filed by Viacom 18 Motion Pictures, producer of movie 'Blood Money' against Jyoti Cable Network and other unknown cable operators restraining them from infringing their copyrights and the Court granted an interim injunction called 'john doe' order under Order 39 Rule 1 and Rule 3 of CPC, 1908.

CS(OS) 785/2012
..... Plaintiff
Through Mr. Rajiv Nayar, Sr. Adv. with Mr. Harshvardhan Jha, Adv. for the Plaintiff.
I.A. No. 5598/2012 (under Section 151 CPC)
In view of the law laid down in Aktiebolaget Volvo and Ors. vs. R. Venkatachalam and Anr. 160 (2009) Delhi Law Times 100, plaintiff is permitted to place on record the photocopies of the documents, subject to producing original thereof at the time of admission/denial of the documents. Application is disposed of.
I.A. No. 5597/2012 (under Order 26 Rule 9 r/w Section 151 CPC)
Disposed of as not pressed.
CS(OS) No. 785/2012
Plaint be registered as Suit. Summons be issued to the defendants in ordinary manner, registered A.D. post and courier service, returnable for 12th July, 2012. Process fee etc. be filed within a week.
I.A. No.5596/2012 (under Order 39 Rules 1 and 2 r/w Section 151 CPC)
Notice for the date fixed.
Plaintiff is engaged in the business of production and distribution of cinematograph films and other entertainment businesses. Plaintiff is the co-producer of cinematograph film ?BLOOD MONEY? along with Vishesh Films Pvt. Ltd. Plaintiff has copyright over the said film. In view of the past experience plaintiff apprehends that by using advanced technology, the movie ?BLOOD MONEY? would be copied and distributed in the market on DVDs/CDs as also exhibited on cable and internet by defendant nos. 1 to 5 and other unknown persons who have been impleaded as defendant nos. 6 to 30 in the assumed name Ashok Kumar. In case the film is shown on cable, internet and/or through any other medium by the persons, who are not being authorized by the plaintiff to do so, cine goers may not go to theaters to watch the film, resulting in huge financial losses to the plaintiff. Factum of copying and distributing the film by such unscrupulous persons on CDs/DVDs/Blue-ray discs/VCDs and through various other mediums has been noticed in the past in respect of new releases not only by the plaintiff but other producers as well. It is contended that with regard to such unknown persons "John Doe" practice has to be resorted to, which is otherwise well recognized not only in India but in various other countries such as United States of America, Canada, England and Australia. I do find force in this contention.

In Taj Television vs. Rajan Mandal and Ors. 2003 FSR 22 at page 407 principles of "John Doe" order has been recognized and followed forpassing appropriate
directions against such unknown and unscrupulous cable operators. A Single Judge of this Court in CS (OS) No. 821/2011 titled UTV Software Communications Limited vs. Home Cable Network Ltd. and Ors., has noted that court has jurisdiction to pass an order in nature of a "John Doe" injunction order against unknown persons in the circumstances, as has been pleaded by the plaintiff in the present case. Past practice of unauthorized persons indulging in such illegal activities of copying the film on CDs/DVDs/Blue-ray discs and distributing the same has also been taken note in the said order. One can also not lose sight of the fact that film piracy in respect of such new release is not uncommon and judicial note of this fact can be taken.
In the facts of this case as detailed above, in my view plaintiff has succeeded in making a, prima facie, case in its favour. Plaintiff has exclusive copyright over the film "BLOOD MONEY" which is yet to be released. In case, CDs/ DVDs/Blue-ray discs/VCDs are made and the film is copied by using any other device and uploaded on internet by the defendant nos. 1 to 5 and other unidentified persons and distributed and shown on cable TV, DTH, internet, MMS, Tapes and CAS, plaintiff will indubitably suffer irreparable loss and injury. Balance of convenience also lies in favour of the plaintiff.
For the forgoing reasons, defendants, their partners, proprietors, directors, shareholder, officers, servants, agents, representatives, franchisees, nominees and other unnamed and undisclosed persons, are restrained from communicating without license or displaying, releasing showing, uploading, downloading, exhibiting, playing, and/or defraying the movie ?BLOOD MONEY? in any manner without a proper license from the plaintiff or in any other manner which would violate/infringe the plaintiff's copyright in the said cinematograph film "BLOOD MONEY" through different mediums like CD, DVD, Blue-ray disc, VCD, Cable TV, DTH, Internet services, MMS, Pen drives, Hard drives, Tapes, CAS or in any other like manner.

Compliance of Order 39 Rule 3 be made within a week.
Copy of the order be given Dasti under the signatures of Court Master.
MARCH 26, 2012

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