SC dismisses Netflix plea against Bihar court's stay order on docuseries 'Bad Boy Billionaires'
New Delhi/IBNS: The Supreme Court today refused to provide relief to Netflix for its new web series "Bad Boy Billionaires", which had been put on stay by a Bihar court.
"We are not granting relief. You should not have come here," Chief Justice Bobde said, advising Netflix to approach High Court if it wished to challenge the order of the Bihar court, reported NDTV.
The web series named "Bad Boy Billionaires" was being promoted an "investigative docuseries" that "explores the greed, fraud, and corruption that built up - and ultimately brought down - India's most infamous tycoons".
The series related the saga of the rise and fall of billionaires who allegedly siphoned off thousands of crores of public money, including the likes of Vijay Mallya, Nirav Modi and other tycoons who were finally brought under the scanner.
It was scheduled to go on air from today, but Sahara's Subroto Roy approached the court stating that the web series was maligning his reputation.
On August 28, a Civil Court in Bihar's Araria restrained Netflix from airing the series or its promo.
"A Sahara Group Entity and a sector manager of Sahara in Bihar had filed an injunction suit for restraining Netflix from releasing the said series against their Chairman and business entities, which was not only defamatory but also offending to the privacy and trademarks of their company," said a statement by Sahara.
Netflix had filed a petition in the Supreme Court for relief against the Bihar court's order seeking revocation of the stay order and also filed a transfer petition, however, no immediate relief in the transfer petition could be granted.
Senior advocate and former Attorney General Mukul Rohtagi appearing on behalf of Netflix argued that the court had entertained similar petitions in the past, which was opposed by Subrata Roy's counsel Vikas Singh, said an NDTV report.
"The Supreme Court today dismissed the SLP filed by Netflix, challenging the order dated 28.08.2020 passed by a Civil Court in Araria, Bihar, restraining the NETFLIX and its producers, directors, employees, officers and associates etc. from releasing, transmitting, distributing, exhibiting, performing or communicating to the public, the promo and the documentary series Bad Boy Billionaires' by any means or technology," the Sahara statement added.
A criminal complaint against Netflix and its directors Abhishek Nag, Reginald Shawn Thompson, Neha Sinha and the producers Nick Read, Ms. Reva Sharma and Iqbal Kidwai, for committing various criminal offences under Information Technology Act 2000, Indian Penal Code and the Trademarks Act has been filed, the statement added.
Sahara conglomerate chief Subrata Roy (68) has been accused of illegally raising thousands of crores from investors. He was arrested in 2014 and lodged in a Delhi jail. Roy paid Rs 12,000 crore of the Rs 24,000 crore he was accused of raising illegally.
Roy, who was released on bail last year, denies the accusations and is yet to be formally charged over the bonds scheme was released on bail last year.
Diamond merchant Mehul Choksi, who is also wanted in PNB scam, also approached the Delhi High Court with a similar objection, but the court refused to entertain his plea. His appeal to pre-screen the docuseries has also been dismissed by the court, said an NDTV report.