The 'exposé' had claimed that Vishal had struck a deal with Lyca Productions.

Days after a whistleblower 'exposé' alleged that actor and Tamil Film Producers Council President Vishal had struck a deal with Lyca Productions, the film production house has issued a clarification.

In an article on the Savukku Online website, it was alleged that Vishal, who promised to root out piracy in the film industry, had struck a deal with Lyca Productions after learning that the company was behind the domain names of several websites that released pirated films.

Responding to this on Monday, Lyca released a statement that reads, “A few days back savukkuonline.com carried an article accusing Lyca Productions of advocating and propagating online piracy. Lyca Productions is a leading Indian Film Production and Distribution company. The domain names under which the so called piracy activities were carried out are lycamovie.com and lycamovies.com.”

Providing a timeline for both the domain names that have allegedly been involved in putting out pirated copies of new releases online, the production house said, “Lycamovie.com was created on May 21st, 2014 under the admin name Tamil Tamilan. On May 22nd 2014, the website was redirected to Tamilgun.com a popular online piracy site. On 2nd June 2014, Lycamovies.com was also redirected to Lycamovie.com. Activities on both Lycamovies.com and Lycamovie.com were shut down by 29th June 2014. At this point, we would like to clearly state that neither Lyca group nor Lyca productions was in anyway associated with either of the domain names - lycamovies.com and lycamovie.com.”

According to publicly available information, www.lycamovie.com was created on May 21 and now redirects to www.lycaproductions.in. Its registrant organisation is Lycatel Services Ltd which is located at Wallbrook Building 195 Marsh Wall London, E14 9SG United Kingdom.

However, www.lycamovies.com has been registered on August 10 last year by a domain registration company with its address in Arizona, USA.

Further, Lyca states, “Following this, the domain name lycamovie.com was not renewed by the previous admin Tamil Tamilan and it became free. Lyca Group undertook the domain name Lycamovie.com on July 5th, 2017. Lyca Group could not acquire the domain name Lycamovies.com as the domain name was renewed. It is common corporate practice to acquire domain names with prefixes and suffixes as a company expands. Presently lycamovie.com is redirected to lycaproductions.in, Lyca Productions’s official website. We would like to reiterate Lyca Productions was in no way associated with lycamovie.com prior to July 5th 2017. Also post July 5th 2017 there has been no online piracy activities on lyamovie.com. Therefore the allegations against Lyca Productions are baseless and intentional to defame the company name.(sic)”

Stating that Lyca “has strongly advocated Anti Piracy norms and has taken extensive steps to curb piracy for both our films and other films,” the company said that it was willing to clarify allegations on any forum.

Lyca also said that it would “take stringent action against the media houses and personalities who have spoken baselessly against Lyca Group.”