We all know that producer-director Mahesh Bhatt and lyricist Javed Akhtar sit on either side of the fence when it comes to the artistes-producer divide over who makes the money from song copyrights. Nevertheless, it was shocking to see both tech-savvy Bollywood veterans indulge in an open debate on the subject.

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Javed Akhtar tweeted on July 6, “All over the world author/composers get royalties but here they are taken away by one-sided contracts.” Further continuing his volley of questions directed at Mahesh, he said, “You are not fooling any one. You represent the vested interest in this matter and stand totally exposed. It is strange that Mahesh Bhatt wants to protect the rights of Zakir Naik but not of Pt Ravi Shankar, Rehman, Sonu Nigam and Javed Akhtar.”

Not the one to hold a verbal punch, Mahesh Bhatt replied instantly, “If what you allege about me is true, it should not hurt me. And if it is not true even then it should not hurt me. We can’t get far by merely demonizing our producer ‘brother’.

The director-producer made a detailed arguments in favour of the producers, “The producers are feeling marginalized they feel that the Copyright Bill, 2010 in its present form should sent back for re-drafting. The feudal mind sets of the producers have to change. But this idea of the starving artist is also exaggerated. The fact is that the Composers / Singers make millions by performing on hit songs by way of live shows.”

A lively debate, indeed!

By Koimoi Team

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