Indian Music Industry conducts anti-piracy raids in Delhi

MUMBAI: In a music anti-piracy operation, local police station, Connaught Place, with the help of the Indian Music Industry (IMI) investigators raided two shops, namely Shop No.1 and Shop No.S-3 at Palika Bazaar on 28 July. Articles used in piracy such as PCs, Card Readers, and DVD writers were seized during these raids.

Police arrested the two accused, Bharat Luthra (owner of the shop) and Pervez Khan and registered a case against them under section 63, 65, 68(A) of the Copyright Act. Both the accused have been sent to judicial custody for 15 days.

Titles of IMI members companies (Saregama, Tips, Venus) like Ajab Prem Ki Gajab Kahani, Singh is Kinng, De Dana Dan, Jannat, Tum Mile, Gal Tan Bandi, Dil Apna Punjabi, Dil Dol Gaya, etc. have been recovered by the Police.

Prior to the execution of the raid, two civilian decoy witnesses were sent to the respective shops alongwith a currency note of Rs.500/- each duly signed by the respective Investigating officer, to get the Copyrighted songs belonging to IMI Member Companies (Saregama, Tips, Venus) loaded on the Mobile chips carried by them. After the music was downloaded on the Mobile chips, both the shops were immediately raided by two separate raiding parties headed by Sub-Inspectors K.K Mishra and Dinesh Kumar alongwith their teams. The duly signed currency notes of Rs.500/- by the respective IOs have also been recovered during the raids.

Palika Bazaar is a hub of music piracy and conducting raids in this market is a very challenging task as there is strong lobbying and unified resistance put up by the shopkeepers- this acts as a major hindrance in carrying out raids.

IMI chief coordinator Manjari Jaruhar said, "IMI sincerely appreciates the efforts of the Delhi police in conducting these raids. Palika Bazaar is regarded as the hub of music piracy and hence it requires a lot of vigilance and relentless efforts to conduct these operations successfully by countering the strong resistance by the shopkeepers. Six months rigorous imprisonment and a fine of Rs 50,000 can be imposed upon shopkeepers found guilty of infringement of copyright."

Piracy has been evolving and expanding its footprints in India. According to IMI, physical format of piracy alone dents a loss of Rs 600 crores annually to the music Industry of India and with newer forms of piracy such, Mobile Chip Piracy, a loss of another Rs 300 crores is estimated. In order to minimize the losses from mobile chip piracy, IMI launched a new licence – Music Mobile Exchange (MMX) licence. A shopkeeper can become legitimate to download music in the external memory (mobile chips) by opting for the MMX licence.

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