"India's OTT market growing exponentially, set to be sixth largest globally by 2024"

Agencies
October 23, 2020

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Mumbai, Oct 23: With over-the-top (OTT) video and data consumption witnessing a steep surge in India led by Jio Platforms that has committed to launch an India-built 5G network in the next 12 to 18 months, the video-on-demand space is set for explosive growth, according to a new report.

According to global market research firm PwC's ‘Global Entertainment & Media Outlook 2020-2024,' the Indian E&M (Entertainment & Media) industry is expected to grow at 10.1% CAGR to reach $55 billion by 2024. 

"India is the ninth-largest consumer market for E&M and is growing rapidly. Looking solely at consumer revenues, India, the fifth-largest economy in the world, is in clear first place with an 8.8 per cent CAGR, helped by the fact that print revenues are still rising in many regions of the country," the report mentioned. 

When it comes to the subscription-based content streaming market, OTT revenue in India is likely to be the sixth largest in the world in 2024. 

"In India, explosive growth in OTT subscriptions has spurred production of short low-budget films made specifically for OTT platforms, sometimes repurposed from long-form movies whose production was halted," the PwC report mentioned. 

India's vibrant market of 40 OTT providers includes regional players targeting the country's large local-language populations. 

"Some OTT players aimed at local village audiences charge one rupee a day for access to content. Disney+, offered in India via Disney's local subsidiary Hotstar, offers a range of pricing levels from basic to premium," the findings showed. 

In June 2020, in the midst of the pandemic, Indian regulators gave the go-ahead to Facebook's $5.7 billion investment for a 9.99% stake in Reliance's Jio Platforms. 

"Jio, India's largest telecoms network, operates an expanding suite of entertainment and media apps and digital services. Within a month, Google invested $4.5 billion to pick up a 7.7 per cent stake in the company," the report said. 

In the 5G era, on-the-go consumers using high-speed mobile data will access greater quantities of content, games and services. 

Inching closer to its 5G rollout, Reliance Jio, which counts 400 million subscribers on its 4G network in India, this week achieved a 1000Mbps throughput milestone for its first round of 5G trials in partnership with US wireless-communication chip giant Qualcomm Inc. 

"The revenue opportunities opened up by 5G reach far beyond wireless data and communications themselves, encompassing markets such as gaming, entertainment, music and OTT video," the report added. 

What's more, 5G's massive network capacity is likely to continue reducing the cost of mobile data, removing the principal constraint for consumer activities such as mobile video consumption over cellular networks. 

In China, many content owners have renegotiated their arrangements with cinemas to switch their movies to OTT streaming platforms and a similar phenomenon can be seen in India.

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News Network
November 24,2020

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Mumbai, Nov 24: The Bombay High Court on Tuesday granted interim protection from arrest to actor Kangana Ranaut and her sister Rangoli Chandel in connection with an FIR registered against them under sedition and other charges, but directed them to appear before Mumbai Police on January 8.

The FIR was registered pursuant to orders passed by the Bandra magistrate's court here directing the police to carry out an inquiry against Ranaut and her sister following a complaint lodged against them for allegedly "trying to create hatred and communal tension" through their social media posts.

A division bench of Justices S S Shinde and M S Karnik was hearing a petition filed by Ranaut and her sister, seeking to quash the FIR and the October 17 order passed by the magistrate.

The court said three summonses were issued by the police and the same need to be honoured.

Ranaut and Chandel's advocate Rizwan Siddiquee then assured the court that the sisters shall appear before the Bandra police in Mumbai on January 8 from 12 pm to 2 pm for recording of their statements.

The high court accepted the statement.

"We are of the prima facie opinion that interim protection till the matter is heard at length deserves to be granted. The police shall not take any coercive action including arrest against the applicants (Ranaut and Chandel)," the court said.

The court also asked why sedition charges were invoked in the case.

"Why is the sedition section invoked? Why are we treating citizens of our country like this?" Justice Shinde said.

The HC said it would consider this issue at length on the next date.

The court posted the plea for further hearing on January 11.

The police have filed the FIR against Ranaut and her sister under IPC sections 153-A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race), 295-A (deliberate acts hurting religious sentiments) and 124-A (sedition), 34 (common intention).

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News Network
November 25,2020

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Malayalam feature "Jallikattu", directed by Lijo Jose Pellissery, has been selected as India's official entry for the International Feature Film category at the Oscars, the Film Federation of India (FFI) announced on Thursday.

The film, which was unanimously chosen from 27 entries across Hindi, Odiya, Marathi and other languages, follows a bull that escapes from a slaughterhouse in a hilly remote village and the entire village men gathering to hunt down the animal.

"Jallikattu" is based on the short story Maoist by Hareesh and stars Antony Varghese, Chemban Vinod Jose, Sabumon Abdusamad and Santhy Balachandran.

"There were a total of 27 films that had entered the race from Hindi, Malayalam, Oria and Marathi. The film which has been nominated by the jury to represent India at Oscars is the Malayalam film 'Jallikattu'.

"It is a film that really brings out the raw problems which are there in human beings, that is we are worse than animals," filmmaker Rahul Rawail, Chairman, Jury Board, Film Federation of India, told reporters in an online press conference.

Calling Pellissery a "very competent director", known for several critically acclaimed films like "Angamaly Diaries" and "Ea Ma Yau", Rawail said "Jallikattu" is a production that country should be proud of.

"The whole film talks about an animal that has run amok in a butcher's shop... The film has been depicted wonderfully and it has been shot very well. The emotion that comes out really moved all of us to have it selected," the chairman said.

"Jallikattu" had its premiere on September 6, 2019 at the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival and received widespread critical acclaim.

Pellissery also won the best director trophy at the 50th International Film Festival of India last year.

In 2019, Zoya Akhtar's "Gully Boy", starring Ranveer Singh and Alia Bhatt, was India's entry to the Oscars.

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Agencies
November 20,2020

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Mumbai, Nov 20: Attorney General K K Venugopal Friday gave consent for initiating contempt proceedings against stand-up comic artist Kunal Kamra for his November 18 tweet, saying it was grossly vulgar and obnoxious and tended to lower the authority of the Supreme Court.

The top law officer had last week granted consent for initiation of contempt proceedings against Kamra for his earlier tweets which allegedly criticised the apex court, saying they were in bad taste and it was time people understood that attacking it brazenly will attract punishment.

The consent of either the Attorney General or the Solicitor General is necessary, under section 15 of the Contempt of Courts Act, 1971, for initiating contempt proceedings against a person.

Venugopal granted the fresh consent on a request made in this regard by Prayagraj-based advocate Anuj Singh.

Kamra, in his November 18 tweet, had made an objectionable gesture while making a comment against the Chief Justice of India.

I have gone through your request for consent under section 15 of the Contempt of Courts Act, 1971 against Kunal Kamra in respect of the tweet dated November 18, 2020 (at 9.46 PM), the Attorney General said in his letter to Singh.

The said tweet is grossly vulgar and obnoxious, and I have no doubt that it would tend to lower the authority of the Supreme Court of India as well as undermine the confidence that the litigant public have in the institution of the Supreme Court of India itself, he said.

In view of the above, I accordingly grant consent under section 15 of the Contempt of Courts Act, 1975, Venugopal said

Armed with the consent granted earlier by the Attorney General, a petition was filed in the Supreme Court on November 13 seeking initiation of criminal contempt proceedings against Kamra for his alleged scandalous tweets against the apex court.

The petition has claimed that Kamra had started publishing tweets on November 11 when the top court was hearing the appeal of journalist Arnab Goswami against the Bombay High Court's order rejecting his plea seeking interim bail in the 2018 abetment to suicide case.

It has alleged that after the top court had granted interim bail to Goswami on November 11, Kamra again published various tweets and thereby scandalized the apex court and further lowered its authority

While granting consent earlier, Venugopal had said today people believe that they can boldly and brazenly condemn the Supreme Court of India and its judges by exercising their freedom of speech, but under the Constitution, the freedom of speech is subject to the law of contempt.

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