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India: SRAI Obtained Government Permission to Operate as a Collective Management Society

After a wait spanning several years, the Script Writers Rights Association of India (SRAI) has finally received approval from the government of India to commence operations as a Collective Management Society for the Author's Rights of Script Writers and Audiovisual Producers.

This significant milestone comes after a lengthy process of application and anticipation, signifying a step forward in protecting creators' rights in India's audiovisual industry.

The official approval by the Author's Rights Division of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (DPIIT) marks the beginning of a new era for SRAI and audiovisual creators in India.

While formal registration is still pending and will occur after the elections - taking place between April 19 and June 1, 2024 - this permission is a crucial step forward for the association, which has tirelessly worked to achieve this government recognition.

Vinod Ranganath, vice president of SRAI
Crucial Support from AVACI

This achievement by SRAI can be partly attributed to a recent court ruling in the NOVEX case, which established that a Collective Management Organization (CMO) does not require registration to function as such as long as it complies with Author's Rights Law. This ruling has paved the way for SRAI to begin operations without further delays.

Furthermore, this recognition has been made possible through the support and collaboration of the International Confederation of Audiovisual Authors (AVACI), which brings together entities worldwide advocating for audiovisual authors' rights.

Since the formation of SRAI, AVACI has provided guidance and technical support, and currently, is working on creating a website for implementing the AVSYS system, a vital tool for managing audiovisual creators' author's rights.

To Kill a Tiger, Indian film nominated for an Academy Award this year

Efforts are also underway to train personnel in the use of the AVSYS system to facilitate the registration and declaration of audiovisual works by SRAI. This training process will be supported by entities with extensive experience in AVSYS system usage, such as the Directors Guild of Argentina (DAC) and ARGENTORES - founding members of the Federation of Latin American Audiovisual Authors Societies (FESAAL) and AVACI - who will contribute their expertise in collective rights management.

SRAI's Next Steps

With government approval in hand, SRAI is ready to take the next step: launching a nationwide membership campaign to recruit, initially, scriptwriters and producers as association members.

This is a crucial step in strengthening creators' representation in the audiovisual industry and ensuring adequate protection of their author's rights.

All We Imagine as Light, Indian film in official competition at the Cannes Film Festival

In this regard, SRAI is actively working on bilateral agreements with other Collective Management Organizations (CMOs) both domestically and internationally.

Such agreements are essential to ensure cooperation and rights exchange between different associations, thereby strengthening the position of scriptwriters and producers in India's entertainment industry.


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