By S.S. Selvanayagam
The Commercial High Court issued an Enjoining Order restraining telecasting, exhibiting, displaying or showing the film ‘Sujatha,’ produced in Sri Lanka in 1953.
High Court Judge Ashan Marikar issued this order pursuant to an Intellectual Property litigation initiated by G.R. Pathmaraj, son of K. Gunaratnam. Court issued notices returnable for 7 February.
Plaintiff cited Tissa Nagodawithana and Movie Producers and Importers Ltd. as Defendants.
S.A. Parathalingam PC with N.R. Sivendran instructed by Anoma Gunatilake appeared for the Plaintiff. Dhaniya Gunawardane appeared for the Defendants.
Plaintiff states his father K.Gunaratnam died on 9 August 1989 leaving a last will and that deceased Gunaratnam during his lifetime produced a Sinhala film ‘Sujatha’ and claims that his exclusive economic and moral rights was protected during his lifetime and is also protected for a period of 70 years from his death.
He states during the 1983 communal disturbances, his business establishments were attacked and damaged and valuable articles were removed or stolen or taken away by various persons.
He impugns that a few days ago and particularly from 17 January, the 1st Defendant wrongfully and unlawfully without any right or entitlement commenced publishing/advertising both in the newspapers as well as in the media and social media holding out that the said movie ‘Sujatha,’ which belongs to late K. Gunaratnam, would be exhibited/shown at the National Film Corporation Theatre on 21 January and in theatres islandwide from there from which is conducted by the 2nd Defendant.
Plaintiff pleads the Defendants are infringing the rights of his and/or the estate of late Gunaratnam violating the copyright and/or the estate of late Gunaratnam.