Piracy has cost entertainment industry Rs 4 mn

NEW DELHI: Rampant piracy in the entertainment industry has leads to an estimated loss of Rs 4 million annually for the Indian film industry.

Pointing out that these figures have been provided by Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Ficci), information and broadcasting minister Jaipal Reddy told Upper House of Parliament yesterday that under the Copyright Act, 1957, which falls under the purview of the ministry of human resource development, infringement of copyright is a cognisable offence.

The government, from time to time, receives representations from the film industry, regarding the need for strict action against piracy.

The responsibility of dealing with offences the Copyright Act rests with the police authorities of the state government and the Union Territory administration. Copyright Enforcement Cells have been set up in most of the states/Union Territories headed by a senior police officer to deal with such offences. No data is maintained centrally by the government regarding the number of video piracy cases reported, the minister said.

Film industry to grow at 18 per cent:

In reply to another question, quoting Ficci figures, Reddy said that the film industry in India is expected to grow at a compounded annual growth rate of 18 per cent to gross Rs 101million by the year 2008.

Gross industry revenues over a period of 1999 to 2001 have also recorded an increase. The industry recorded a loss in 2002. However, the total revenues of the industry increased to Rs 45 million in 2003. According to the Ficci report, the minister said, Indian diaspora across Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America and North America is conservatively estimated at 20 million. The underlying potential of the film industry to earn foreign exchange is linked to the effective reach of Indian films to these viewers, as also its visibility in global markets.

According to information received from the Film Federation of India (FFI), year-wise break-up of foreign exchange earned by the film industry during the last three years is as follows:

Year Amount
2000-2001 Rs 4.5 billion
2001-2002 Rs 9 billion
2002-2003 Rs 10.4 billion

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