The officials had summoned Suresh Srinivasan of PPL to record his statement on Tuesday.
Mumbai: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has recorded a statementof the chief operating officer (COO) of Phonographic Performance Limited (PPL), a music licensing company and performance rights organisation, a day after it was raided by the agency in connection with the royalty non-payment scam case.
The officials had summoned Suresh Srinivasan of PPL to record his statement on Tuesday. A team of ED officials grilled Srinivasan till late in the evening in connection with the PPL’s role and royalty collection.
The ED had also raided the office of Select Media Holdings Private Limited (SMHPL), on Monday, with whom PPL entered into a contract and passed on complete rights to them for collecting royalty. The investigators are ascertaining the legality pertaining
to transfer of rights and outsourcing the money collection from one company to other.
“During the searches, we found rate cards of around 30,000 establishments to whom licences were issued for playing music in lieu of royalty payment. These rate cards belong to malls, hotels, restaurants, multiplexes and bars where music is played. These rate cards have been seized,” said a senior ED officer, requesting anonymity.
The officials now have the tedious task of scanning through the licence details of these establishments and the royalty collection from each of them. The same will be a crucial piece of evidence and it would help ascertain the quantum of money that SMHPL collected and the quantum that was given to the PPL.
IPRS was the parent company that was entrusted with the responsibility of royalty collection, ED officials said. As per the agreement between IPRS and the two companies, royalty of Rs 6,000 was agreed to be collected for playing a Hindi song and Rs 3,000 for a song in any other language.
The alleged scam in royalty collection took place between 2008 and 2013. The ED is also scanning through the agreement documents signed by the two companies with IPRS and the accounting books pertaining to the royalty collection.