Maula Jatt, Bilal Lashari, the Legend of Maula Jatt, LHC

Court stops Pakistani filmmaker from illegal use of Maula Jatt’s title

In a major setback to filmmaker Bilal Lashari, the Lahore High Court has stayed the unauthorised use of the title of the film Maula Jatt, dialogues, characters, shooting and exhibition of work similar to the movie.

Justice Aminuddin Khan issued the stay order on a petition moved by Mohammad Sarwar Bhatti of Bahoo Film Corporation, the producer of the original 1979 Punjabi film Maula Jatt, seeking an injunctive order against the exhibition of film The Legend of Maula Jatt directed by Bilal Lashari.

Mr Bhatti’s counsel Ahsan Masood argued that the petitioner possessed the rights in relation to the movie, including the title and cinematographic works, and the censorship certificate was also issued by the censor board in the name of the petitioner as producer.

He contended that the respondents, including Bilal Lashari, had no right to use its title, script, character, dialogue, poetry, music, etc, in respect of this work, adding that the respondents had been infringing on the petitioner’s legal rights.

The counsel said the respondent producer and his team were making The Legend of Maula Jatt having same dialogues, characters and script of the 1979 film, which under the law they were not entitled to do.

Barrister Ahmad Pansota and other counsel for the respondents argued that they were not using any unauthorised copyright or trademarks, anyway. They said their clients had a valid copyright certificate on the script for The Legend of Maula Jatt.

The petitioner’s counsel, however, requested the court to restrain the respondents from unauthorised and illegal usage of the title, copying/publishing script, characters, dialogues, poetry, style, songs, music, registering and exhibition of work deceptively similar to the film Maula Jatt in any manner.

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