The fight is on, as some may say. After WPP finally responded to NDTV’s July 26 - filed lawsuit on August 22, 2012, NDTV has retorted to the holding company’s statement that NDTV’s lawsuit has yet not been served to WPP companies and that the lawsuit is hypothetical.
NDTV’s statement said that “WPP would know, or should know, that service was made on August 10, 2012 in New York, and processes under the Hague Convention are also underway as is the normal procedure”. Also, according to the statement, the lawyers for Kantar Media Research UK have already confirmed to NDTV that the service on Kantar was acceptable in New York.
“It is indeed strange that WPP terms the suit as hypothetical,” quoted NDTV’s statement, citing that the statement is available to read in full on the Supreme Court of New York website.
NDTV quoted in the statement that it is baffled and amused by the “PR effort issued by WPP”. The statement said, “PR is clearly the main aim, as the WPP statement contains a number of legal flaws”.
Industry sources pointed out that NDTV may also be responding to WPP’s statement that it is considering defamation proceedings against NDTV. “NDTV’s thought process may be that when NDTV has not made any public statement, and has only filed a lawsuit, defamatory charges would not apply on the broadcaster,” said a senior industry official.
WPP had said in its statement that despite the lack of any valid service, it would issue an application to strike out the “hypothetical” lawsuit.
NDTV’s statement said, “Matters have progressed much beyond ‘service’. Nielsen lawyers have been in touch with our lawyers and have requested for an extension. In addition, the CEO of Kantar has been in touch with us and has acknowledged receiving the complaint. NDTV has affidavits to substantiate this.”
Through its statement, NDTV seems to imply that WPP is using its massive PR machine to make baseless threats against the broadcaster. “Instead we request that WPP should focus on honestly fixing their badly damaged and dishonest ratings system in India,” stated the news broadcaster.
“NDTV would give WPP the benefit of doubt and assume WPP has made a silly error which simple cross-checking through their internal systems will soon correct. If all else fails, for details of the complaint, we suggest WPP visits the Supreme Court of New York's website where the “non-hypothetical” complaint is detailed in full,” concluded NDTV.