In a first, the Indian Singers' Rights Association(ISRA) distributed Rs. 51 lakh to the playback singers of the Tamil Film industry at Chennai on Friday. This is being seen as a major move in the royalty fight that ISRA initiated in 2015, demanding that both public broadcasters (Doordarshan, All India Radio) and private broadcasters (TV Channels, Radio stations, Telephone companies, Media events, etc) pay royalties to singers whose songs they broadcast. Their demand was made based on the Indian government implemented Performer's Right (effective since June 21, 2012), a provision that says that lyricists and singers should get 50 per cent royalty on any commercial use of their songs, dating upto 50 years old.
Singers K.J. Yesudas, P. Susheela, S.P. Balasubrahmanyam, Chitra, Srinivas and many others were present to receive the cheque, while they also celebrated the recent National award of K.J. Yesudas. ISRA’s CEO Sanjay Tandon has been quoted by a leading daily as saying, “This ₹51 lakh royalty money will grow 10 fold if and when radio channels, television channels and mobile companies start paying us. Right now, only IPL teams, amusement parks and few other establishments have paid the royalty money.”