No relief for Mumbai OOH owners: Court tells them to pay licence fee for July

The fee has to be submitted ‘Under Protest’ clause, which will allow the OOH owners to reclaim the payment with interest if the court rules in their favour later

e4m by Noel Dsouza
Updated: Jul 2, 2020 7:09 AM
Bombay HC Hearing on OOH Owners

Out of Home (OOH) media owners in Mumbai have not been granted relief from the Bombay High Court in the licence fee waiver matter. The court on Wednesday ordered them to deposit the fee for the month of July and told them to file it ‘Under Protest’ clause. Under the clause, the OOH owners can reclaim the payment with interest if the court rules in their favour later.
The court will hear the issue further on July 21, 2020.
OOH owners had sought waiver of licence fee till the month of August due to less visibility of ads on the road owing to the lockdown. To support their plea, OOH owners had cited the examples of authorities such as BEST, Indian Railways and the Airport Authority of India which have not collected licence fees since the lockdown.
Earlier on June 16, the Bombay High Court provided the much-needed relief to the OOH players in Mumbai, allowing them to take down COVID-mandated ads and use the space to meet client requirements.
The petition for fee waiver was filed by eight Mumbai-based OOH owners— Creation Publicity Pvt. Ltd, Bright Advertising Pvt. Ltd, Orion Advertisers, Anurag Sites, Em Vee Advertising Company, Pingle Outdoor, Yoag Advertisers, and Pioneer Publicity Corporation Ltd.
The hearing in the case was supposed to take place on Monday. However, it was adjourned and moved to Wednesday. It had to be postponed because the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai had filed a submission in a systematic and tabular format that the OOH counsel needed to study and prepare.

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