Rupa Publication Pulls ‘The Mussoorie Murders’ After Savoy Hotel Moves Delhi High Court

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Rupa Publications has withdrawn its yet to be published book ‘The Mussoorie Murders’ after ITC Group’s famous and historic ‘The Savoy’ hotel approached the Delhi High Court with a lawsuit seeking a permanent and binding injunction against him.

The hotel had also obtained an FIR filed against the publisher alleging that the book contained defamatory material against it. The book mentions “fictional murder stories” at the hotel and also uses a photo of the hotel’s facade on its cover, according to the complaint filed with the police.

The bench of Justice Mini Pushkarna was informed on Friday that the Savoy Hotel in Mussoorie and the publisher of the book had signed an agreement and settled the issues on 04 September. The court then dismissed the lawsuit as withdrawn.

The book written by Divyraroop Bhatnagar was previously available for pre-order on e-commerce platforms and was set to launch on September 9. cover of the book read.

On September 2, the Savoy Hotel told the court that the book defamed its reputation because there were serious allegations that could strike fear into the minds of customers and guests. According to the hotel, the book attempted to scandalize and defame its image. The publication of the book will create undue fear among the guests, the court said.

It was also submitted to the court that the cover of the book features the facade of the hotel and that the description of the book specifically mentions its name. “Both are protected by relevant intellectual property rights and were used by defendants without the required prior permission of plaintiff,” the court said.

On the day of the book’s scheduled release of September 5, the court was informed by the hotel’s attorney that they had received a letter from the publisher stating that they had decided to withdraw the launch as well as the publication. and distribution of the book with immediate effect.

“Furthermore, the published stock of the books will be pulped and destroyed with immediate effect,” the letter produced in court reads, adding that advertisements regarding the book launch will also be removed.

Rupa Publication in the letter also stated that neither the publisher nor the author intended to defame the hotel and there was no bad intention on their part. There was no mensrea attached to the deed and they were unaware of any pending or past litigation related to the matter, the letter further states.

On September 23, the court was informed that the parties had signed the letter and reached an agreement. Under the terms of the agreement, the Court has been informed, the FIR which has been registered by the hotel may also be withdrawn.

“Let the parties take the appropriate steps in terms of settlement”, said the Court.

Title: THE SAVOY HOTEL c. RUPA PUBLICATION PVT LTD

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