Two FM broadcasters have moved the Calcutta High Court stating that Indian Performing Rights Society (IPRS), which claims to protect the interests of lyricists and composers, has no authority to demand licence fees for songs broadcast by them.
The broadcasters are Radio Today Broadcasting Limited, the FM Radio Wing of India Today Group, and Radio Mirchi.
Radio Today, which is yet to begin its service, moved a petition in Justice Kalyan Jyoti Sengupta's court claiming that IPRS has no right to issue licences or claim payment of licence fees for broadcasts.
The court directed that the matter would be heard on Wednesday.
In a separate petition moved before the same judge, Entertainment Network India Ltd, which runs Radio Mirchi, moved an application for addition as a party plaintiff in the suit, contending that IPRS was unnecessarily giving groundless threat of infringement of its alleged copyright.
Justice Sengupta granted leave to Radio Mirchi to move the matter before his court.
Radio Mirchi and Radio Today have claimed that IPRS has no subsisting copyright and was threatening proceedings of infringement only to compel and coerce the broadcasters.
The petitioners claimed that producer or the music company was the owner of copyright of songs or any other such rendition, and the lyricists and composers were divested of all rights to these.
While Radio Today was represented by counsel Debal Banerjee, Radio Mirchi's counsel was Jayanta Mitra. IPRS was represented by counsel PC Sen against Radio Today and Sanjib Banerjee against Radio Mirchi.