As per the announcement made in the second week of September, the Screenwriters Association (SWA) and Cine and Television Artistes Association (CINTAA) have now signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). This agreement, agreed and accepted by Shri Sunil Salgia and Shri Sushant Singh – General Secretaries of SWA and CINTAA, respectively, will address all kinds of violations, be it sexual harassment, copyright infringement, payment or breach of contract involving the members of both the Associations.
The following are the salient pointers of the MoU:
SWA and CINTAA will collaborate with each other and stand in solidarity regarding any issues involving the welfare and well-being of its members. Especially, if any representation to the government or other authority is required in this regard, SWA and CINTAA shall support each other’s representation before such authority.
- SWA and CINTAA will take the required steps and efforts to educate its members regarding good practices to be observed in the industry, particularly, to uphold and respect the rights and dignity of other members (specifically including but not limited to sexual harassment, copyright violation and/or non-payment of dues) and where necessary, collaborate in organizing, arranging and conducting programmes, workshops and seminars or any other kinds of events for imparting such education and awareness among its respective members.
- In case of any proven instances of misconduct against or breach of any rights of the members of SWA or CINTAA, relating to or occurring during their course of discharge of professional work and duties, both the associations shall extend support to each other and stand in solidarity with each other to condemn all such proven instances of wrongdoings.
- In case of any disputes between the members of both the associations, the parties shall arrange a joint meeting of their respective Dispute Settlement Committees. The members concerning such dispute from both the associations shall have a moral obligation to attend the Joint DSC meetings taking place between the signing associations.
- If members of either association violate the rights or dignity of the members of the other association, the concerned association of the defaulter member shall take all measures to encourage and/or compel its defaulter member to participate in the mediation process of the complainant’s association. If such defaulter member refuses or refrains from participating in the dispute resolution process of the complainant’s association, or if the dispute resolution body of the complainant’s association finds that the defaulter member is indeed in default, then the defaulter member’s association shall take strict action against such defaulter for such wrongdoings.
- The dispute settlement body of the complainant’s association shall have the jurisdiction to conduct mediation if the complaint is pertaining to the particular craft of the association and the defaulter member’s association shall respect and abide by the findings and decision of the complainant’s association. (e.g. if the dispute has arisen in the complainant’s capacity as a writer or in the course of work of the complainant providing his/her services as a writer, then SWA’s dispute settlement body shall have the jurisdiction to entertain the dispute; vice versa for CINTAA if the dispute arises out of the complainant’s course of work as an artist or in relation to the complainant’s services as an artist).
- If the dispute concerns the members of both the associations in their capacities as a writer and artist, then, the defaulter member shall have the right to request the representation of their association in the dispute settlement process, in which case, there may be a JDSC meeting to resolve the dispute. However, such JDSC meeting shall not take place for any complaints pertaining to sexual harassment. Complaints pertaining to sexual harassment shall strictly be handled by the concerned association of the aggrieved person.
- Wherever mutually beneficial, the associations shall collaborate and provide support to each other for any other matters not specifically mentioned herein. The parties are free to add any further points to the MOU as and when required through mutual consent. (This MOU shall not be a commitment of funds to either party on behalf of the other party or any disclosure or transfer of intellectual property rights, or any other proprietary information.)