The song in the end credits of Farah Khan's 'Happy New Year' may have left viewers on a high but composer-singer Surj of the RDB (Rhythm, Dhol Bass) music group is hardly amused. Surj has sent a legal notice to Red Chillies, the producers of the film, alleging that his song has been used without consent.
From left: Happy New Year actors, Vivaan Shah, Boman Irani, Shah Rukh Khan, choreographer Ganesh Hegde, Deepika Padukone, Abhishek Bachchan and Sonu Sood at the shoot of the Sharabi song; (inset) Surj, RDB’s lead member
A few days before the film’s release, the Sharabi track was incorporated and shot with lead actors. It was initially released by the RDB group in 2012 and Surj claims he owns the rights of the track. RDB was formed by three Indian origin British brothers — Surj, Manj and Kuly — in 1997. After the demise of Kuly in 2012, Manj went his way to pursue his solo career. Surj has taken it on himself to carry on the legacy of RDB.
Says the source, “The song was sold to Red Chillies with fraudulent documents by former RDB member Manj. When Surj learnt about it, he sent a notice to Red Chillies requesting that the song credit be attributed to him or the track be removed from the film. He was told that they would suggest a way out, but he was left disappointed.”
In the film the Sharabi track has vocals by Manj, Nindy Kaur and Vishal-Shekhar. The song has been attributed to the film’s composers Vishal-Shekhar.
Surj from RDB says, “It’s a shame that the film has been caught in Manj’s and my split. As the sole lead member of RDB, we continue to perform new and old hits regardless of other people claiming ownership. In spite of this, I wish Shah Rukh Khan and the Happy New Year unit its deserved success.”
Sources at Red Chillies maintained that they have not received any notice.