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Salman backs Ajay over SRK in Yash Raj vs 'Son of Sardaar', Bollywood's Diwali war

With both sides claiming victory in the Competition Appellate Tribunal hearing over the weekend, the only thing clear is Salman Khan’s stance in the brouhaha, who, ironically is not even the lead hero in the two films that are in the centre of this media storm: “Son of Sardaar” and “Jab Tak Hai Jaan” that release on November 13 across the UAE cinemas.

The second round of legal proceedings, which even saw an appearance by award winning director Prakash Jha on behalf of Devgn Films, saw the Tribunal refuse to stay the screening of “Jab Tak Hai Jaan.”

However, notices have been issued to YRF in response to Devgn’s appeal over alleged abuse of a dominant position in the market and ‘armtwisting’ to showcase one film over the other across single screens.

Ajay Devgn Films (ADF) had moved the Tribunal after the Competition Commission rejected his plea against YRF.

Both sides claim victory

ADF issued a statement following the verdict, stating: “The Competition Appellate Tribunal has seen merit in our case and has issued notice for enquiring into the anti competitive activities of YRF about the tie in arrangement to block our movie ‘Son of Sardaar’ on the day of Diwali. ”

However, in a strongly worded rebuttal, YRF issued its own statement that said: “After the Competition Commission dismissed the complaint filed by ADF on the basis that they were of the opinion that there was no contravention of the Act in this case, the Competition Appellate Tribunal, in a hearing, also refused to pass any interim order against YRF on the ground that the complainant had not put forward sufficient facts to establish that YRF had violated the Competition Act.”

It added: “We completely refute the press release put out by ADF as the Competition Appellate Tribunal did not find any merit in the contention of ADF because the Tribunal was of the view that ADF has totally failed to establish that the agreements entered into by YRF with the single screens cinemas would cause any appreciable adverse effect on competition.”

Salman Khan takes a stand

After Jha’s open support of Devgn, actor Salman Khan – who has a cameo in “Son of Sardaar” – openly backed ADF on record.

In a tweet, the actor said: “Pathan Ke Yaar Se Panga Mat lena. Sorry yaar..Diwali bekaar without Son of Sardaar [Do not mess with a Pathan. Sorry friends, but Diwali is useless without Son of Sardaar].”

The actor, whose last film was surprisingly with YRF in “Ek Tha Tiger” where he starred opposite “Jab Tak Hai Jaan” actress Katrina Kaif, also featured his “SOS” friends on his show “Big Boss 6”, with critics saying, Khan openly issued an ultimatum to challengers.

Everyone knows of Khan’s legendary war with “JTHJ” lead actor Shah Rukh Khan, so it is safe to say that the actor will leave no stone unturned to help his good friend Devgn in this box office battle.

 

It looks like  a cracker of a Diwali in Bollywood this season, as the fireworks between Yash Raj Films and Ajay Devgn Films continues in round two of the battle.

Which film emerges as the clear winner in the end?

Only time will tell.