Chennai

HC permits scriptwriter to file fresh suit against Vijay starrer Bigil

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The Madras High Court on Tuesday permitted scriptwriter K.P. Selvah alias Panneerselvam to file a fresh civil suit alleging infringement of his copyright by film director Atlee who has written and directed the much-awaited Vijay-starrer Bigil, all set to hit screens on Friday.

Justice R. Suresh Kumar allowed a civil revision petition filed by the scriptwriter and set aside an order passed by XIV Assistant City Civil Court on August 20 refusing to grant liberty to the petitioner to file a fresh suit despite allowing him to withdraw his earlier suit due to certain defects.

The judge made it clear that he was not expressing any view on the merits of the petitioner’s claim over copyright since those issues would have to be decided only after the litigant files a fresh suit before the appropriate forum which happens to be the High Court itself in so far as Chennai city was concerned.

Though as on date there was absolutely no legal impediment for the release of the movie, issues might crop up if Mr. Selvah files a fresh suit any time within the next three days and urges the portfolio judge Justice N. Sathish Kumar to take it up for an urgent hearing in view of the impending release of the movie.

If the judge accedes to the request, the litigant might seek an interim injunction restraining the release of the movie and such a plea would have to be decided by the judge after hearing the director as well as the production firm and finding out whether any prima facie case was made out for grant of such injunction.

According to Mr. Selvah, the script of Bigil was nothing but a story penned by him under the title ‘Kalki’ in 2017 and registered with the South Indian Film Writers’ Association on October 10, 2018. He had accused Mr. Atlee of having plagiarised his script, based on the game of football, without due credit to him.

However, advocate P.V. Balasubramanian, representing the film’s director, refuted the claim stoutly and said that his client had registered Bigil’s script with the same association on July 4, 2018 itself under the title ‘Vathiyar’ and hence the question of infringement of copyright would not arise at all.

He accused Selvah of unnecessarily creating trouble for the big budget movie at the eleventh hour.

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Printable version | Nov 22, 2019 12:26:06 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/hc-permits-scriptwriter-to-file-fresh-suit-against-vijay-starrer-bigil/article29772237.ece

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