ALSO READT-Series, Sa Re Ga Ma among 5 firms under ED lens in money laundering case Rs 5k-cr money laundering case: ED arrests Delhi businessman Gagan Dhawan Enforcement Directorate, I-T department set to get more powers ED chargesheets Misa Bharti's CA in money laundering case Money laundering probe: Rabri Devi skips ED appearance for 5th time
The ED has summoned executives of top music companies, including Chairman of Yash Raj films Aditya Chopra, in connection with a money-laundering probe involving an umbrella body of artistes and disputes related to payment of royalty. The central probe agency has also issued summonses to Managing Director and CEO of Universal Music D Sanyal and S Subramaniam of Sony Music Entertainment among others. They have been asked to appear before the investigating officer (IO) of the case and record their statements over the next few days, official sources said. Efforts to reach YRF on the issue did not fructify. The heads of T-Series and Saregama music companies have recorded their statements in connection with the case. The agency also conducted fresh searches in Mumbai, Delhi and few other places last week as part of the probe being conducted under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). The Enforcement Directorate had in March 2015 registered a criminal case under the PMLA against the Indian Performing Right Society Limited (IPRS) and the Phonographic Performance Limited (PPL) on the basis of complaints and police FIRs alleging "gross irregularities" in their affairs. The PPL is a copy right society for soundtrack recording companies.
It issues licences to users of sound or music recordings for public performance on behalf of member music companies. The company holds public performance and radio broadcasting rights for over 5 lakh songs in the country. The ED had last year attached assets worth Rs 13 crore of the PPL and mutual funds worth Rs 70.17 crore of the IPRS in connection with the case. It had earlier said that office-bearers of the IPRS had assigned their rights to issue user licences and collect royalties to the PPL on a revenue-sharing basis. The PPL along with the IPRS and Ms Select Media Holding Pvt Ltd (SMHPL) indulged in criminal conspiracy and cheating and revenue due to members of the IPRS was not paid to them, it had said. "Investigations reveal that Rs 13.04 crore was thus retained fraudulently by the PPL which led to non-payment of royalties to members of the IPRS who are music writers, composers, directors among others," the agency had said. There were allegations that as "the IPRS and the PPL are dominated by music companies, rights of literary work owners are being undermined and the IPRS is not collecting and distributing their due royalties", the ED had said. The IPRS collects royalties on public performances of songs and music from consumers like restaurants, radio stations, television channels among others and distributes royalties so collected among lyricists, composers and publishers in the ratio of 20:30:50 (up to June 21, 2012) and in the ratio of 25:25:50 thereafter.