SHAMOIL AHMAD KHAN Vs. FALGUNI SHAH & ORS.
HIGH COURT OF BOMBAY
Shamoil Ahmad Khan
Falguni Shah And Ors.
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(1.) This notice of motion, taken out in a copyright infringement suit, seeks a temporary injunction against the Defendants from telecasting
or exhibiting their web series by the name of "Singardaan" or publishing or
making an adaptation of the Plaintiff's story bearing the same title, i.e.
Singardaan. The Plaintiff also seeks a temporary injunction restraining the
Defendants from using the title "Singardaan", or any other identical or
deceptively similar title, for the Defendants' web series so as to pass off as,
and for that of, the Plaintiff's story titled "Singardaan".
(2.) The Plaintiff is a writer, known for his literary work in Urdu and Hindi Languages, having to his credit popular novels and collection of
short stories. One of the short stories in his collection goes by the name of
"Singardaan" written in Urdu. The story was first published in 1993 in a
literary magazine called "Zahne-Jadid", published from New Delhi and
later, in 1996, in the Plaintiff's own collection of short stories in Urdu titled
"Singardaan" published by Mayar Publication, New Delhi. The story was
also translated in Hindi by the Plaintiff himself and published in a
collection of Hindi short stories by the same name (i.e Singardaan) by Ayan
Publications, New Delhi in 1994. The story has since been re-published in
literary magazines, books, etc. and translated in languages such as English,
Marathi and Punjabi from time to time. It has also been published on
various websites. The story was adapted in the form of a play and staged,
and is claimed to have received rave reviews. The Plaintiff's case is that the
Defendants have produced a web series under an identical title, i.e.
Singardaan, which has 6 episodes of a total duration of about 1 hour and
54 minutes. The series has been launched or released on an App by the name of "Ullu" and is available on the web platform of YouTube among
others. It is the grievance of the Plaintiff that in their own web series the
Defendants have not only copied the Plaintiff's title, Singardaan, but the
entire plot, narrative and characters of his story by the same name. The
Plaintiff, accordingly, seeks damages as well as injunctive reliefs in the suit
and prays for temporary reliefs in the present notice of motion in terms of
the perpetual injunctions prayed for in the suit.
(3.) The motion is opposed by the Defendants, who deny that their web series is a copy or an adaptation of the Plaintiff's story "Singardaan".
The Defendants submit that though the titles are the same, the Defendants'
work is an entirely original story and creation; the premise, the story line
as well as the plot in the two works are materially different.;
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