‘Birla’ song with disclaimer rider in Chakravyuh

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SummaryThe Supreme Court has asked filmmaker Prakash Jha to run a disclaimer with a song from his film Chakravyuh while it is being played.

The Supreme Court has asked filmmaker Prakash Jha to run a disclaimer with a song from his film Chakravyuh while it is being played. The song takes a dig at some of the oldest business houses in the country. The court also asked Jha to include the disclaimer when the song is aired. The song, Mehengai (price rise), mentions Birla, Ambani, Tata and Bata, and led to Birla, Tata and Bata filing cases in the Calcutta and Delhi high courts.

Basant Kumar Birla moved Calcutta High Court seeking removal of the song from the film. In its order the Supreme Court has said that the song, when played, has to be run with the disclaimer: “Use of the names of the song are merely as example. No injury or disrespect is intended to any particular person or brand.” The apex court has also said that “the song appears to have been written in the context of the theme of the film and ought not to be taken as any kind of aspersion against the persons named in the said song.” The division bench of Justice Asim Kumar Banerjee and Justice Shukla Kabir (Sinha) of the Calcutta High Court had earlier maintained that the lyrics of the song are not likely to be taken literally by the viewers. In its order, the Supreme Court endorsed the views expressed by the division bench. The movie is scheduled to be released on October 24. While the Supreme Court has said that the song is in poor taste and the wordings indicating the names of certain business houses could have been avoided, it also maintained that there was no intention to “besmirch the reputation of any particular business house or commercial enterprise.”

“The entire song has been written in a manner which attempts to depict the producer's view of the state of society today,” the apex court said in the order.

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