The Calcutta High Court has said that Media Research Users Council (MRUC) terms and conditions are binding on the users. Therefore, the petition filed by ABP Pvt Ltd challenging findings of Indian Readership Survey by MRUC in 2008 has been dismissed.
According to a statement released by the MRUC "The Calcutta High Court has in a significant judgment delivered on 25 September 2012 held that the arbitration clause embedded in software of the Indian Readership Survey, which is part of the terms and conditions a user must accept before accessing data, is binding. Disposing of a petition filed by ABP Private Limited and vacating an injunction earlier granted by the Court, the Hon. Justice Nadira Patherya referred the dispute relating to IRS 2008 to arbitration."
While replying to the ABP's petition, MRUC said the dispute had to be taken to arbitration. The acceptance of the Indian Readership Survey was part of terms and conditions of MRUC accepted by the users including ABP Pvt Ltd, said MRUC.
The Hon. High Court held, "The issue sought to be raised by the plaintiff in C.S. No.242 of 2008 is covered by the arbitration agreement as the same has been couched in the widest term and encompasses the issue raised, and the same be referred to arbitration."
"MRUC recognises that there will be situations in which users may disagree with some aspect of the conduct of various researches that it conducts. It is precisely to handle such disputes in a spirit of collaborative resolution that MRUC places so much emphasis on Arbitration," the body informed in its statement.