ANI sues PTI in Delhi High Court for ₹2 crores over copyright infringement

NEW DELHI — The Delhi High Court on Friday issued summons to news agency Press Trust of India (PTI) on a copyright infringement and plagiarism case filed by rival Asian News International (ANI).

Justice Mini Pushkarna asked PTI to file its response and listed the case for further hearing on August 9.

ANI has moved the High Court arguing that PTI copied its videos of passengers in a Delhi-Darbhanga Spicejet flight suffering for nearly an hour as the plane’s Air Conditioning (AC) gave up.

The incident happened on June 19, 2024 while the country was going through a severe heat wave and the Spicejet flight’s AC stopped working even as the plane was on the runway.

It is ANI’s case the the longer and shorter versions of the video from inside the flight were shot by its video journalism but as soon as they were sent on ANI’s feed and tweeted on X (Twitter), PTI published identical videos as well.

ANI has sought damages of over ₹2 crores and permanent injunction restraining PTI from publishing any other original works of the plaintiff (ANI).

Senior Advocate Rajshekhar Rao appeared for PTI and said that PTI will take down the videos in 24 hours.

ANI was represented through Senior Advocate Chander M Lall and advocate Sidhant Kumar who stressed that PTI must also issue an apology and a clarification to the news publications who published the news report as a PTI feed.

“They must take down and acknowledge that it is my work. They must apologise. They must write to all the newspapers who published the report as PTI feed. PTI has been stealing my feeds,” Lall argued.

The submission was contested by Rao who said that it is a case of pot calling the kettle black.

“There is no apology needed. There is something more that needs to be said here… We had said that it [the video] is a third party content,” Rao said.

While the Bench was initially inclined to refer the two news agencies to mediation, Senior Advocate Chander M Lall (ANI’s counsel) opposed the suggestion.

The Court finally issued summons to PTI and Lall said that the two parties will talk on the issue.

ANI was represented through law firm Unum Law. — (Bar and Bench)