Fair trade regulator CCI today directed two film employee groupings, their affiliates and three film producers' associations to "cease and desist" from anti-competitive business practices.
The directive has been passed against All India Film Employees Confederation (AIFEC), Federation of Western India Cine Employees (FWICE) and its affiliates, according to an official release.
Besides, the regulator has passed the order against Indian Motion Picture Producers Association (IMPPA), Film and Television Producers Guild of India (FTPGI) and Indian Film and Television Producers Council (IFTPC).
The watchdog found that all these entities violated competition norms by entering into anti-competitive agreements.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) order has come on a complaint filed by one Vipul Shah who had alleged that specific provision of an Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between FWICE and the three producers' associations was anti- competitive.
It was also alleged that provisions such as those pertaining to "member-to-member working, fixation of wages, charging for extra-shift" were anti-competitive, the release said.
After detailed investigation, CCI found that the clause 6 of the pact that mandated that the producer can only engage with the members of FWICE and its affiliates violated competition norms.
Further, clause 18 that provided for the constitution of vigilance committee to enforce clause 6 of the MoU was found to be in violation of the Competition Act, as per the release.
Among others, the directive to "engage dancers/fighters in the ratio of 70:30 was also found to be in contravention of the competition law.
In its order, the CCI noted that trade unions enjoy no immunity or exemption for their conduct which contravenes the provisions of the Competition Act. Thereby, it dismissed the plea of trade unions that they are governed only by the provisions of Trade Union Act, 1926, according to the release.
Without imposing any monetary penalty, the regulator has directed the entities to "cease and desist" from such anti- competitive practices.
However, the watchdog did not find clauses such as those pertaining to fixation of wages and payment for extra shift to be anti-competitive.
The complaint was against a total of 28 groupings.
While considering the issue of monetary penalty, the CCI said it has taken into account the peculiarity of facts and totality of circumstances involved.
Noting that the practice adopted in the MoU was in existence since 1966, the regulator said it was a mechanism to resolve disputes between the producers on one side and the craftsmen employed by them on the other.
"Of the various provisions of the MoU, only clauses 6 and 18 are found to be in violation of the (Competition) Act.
Further, the commission also notes that some of the opposite parties are associations of daily wage earners.
"Therefore, the Commission is of the view that only an order of cease and desist is sufficient to meet the ends of justice in this case," CCI said in its 90-page order.
(This article has not been edited by Zeebiz editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
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