Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 31st 2015 Contents A9
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A last-ditch lawsuit threatening the
Chutney Soca Monarch finals was
thrown out yesterday, clearing the
way for the event at Skinner Park,
San Fernando, tonight.
In a brief oral ruling yesterday, Justice
Andre Des Vignes rejected an injunction
application from the National Chutney
Foundation of T&T (NCFTT) against
the event s promoter George Singh, of
Southex Event Management Limited.
The hearing took place around 8 am at the Hall
of Justice, Port-of-Spain, to allow the parties time
to file an appeal against the ruling. However, in the
end, the group opted not to appeal.
The NCFTT, through its president Vijay Ramlal-
Rai, was claiming that Singh copied its annual com-
petition, which coincides with Indian Arrival Day
celebrations, when he (Singh) incorporated traditional
chutney into his competition.
The NCFTT was relying on the Protection from
Unfair Competition Act, as it contended that Singh s
show would financially cripple its own as a traditional
chutney competition was unique to its organisation.
In defending against the allegation, Singh s lawyer
Dharmendra Punwasee said the NCFTT had no own-
ership rights over traditional chutney music.
Although, he admitted, the two promoters drew
on the same customer base, the two events were not
in competition because they were held over three
As he addressed the NCFTT and its members pres-
ent in court yesterday, Des Vignes said the legislation
which incorporated that organisation did not make
it the exclusive promoter of traditional chutney but
rather encouraged it to work with other organisations
to promote the artform.
Speaking after the decision, Faris Al-Rawi, who
also represented Singh, said he had been confident
his client would prevail in the "frivolous" lawsuit.
"We take the position that it was ludicrous to have
come to court to seek to have a monopoly on the
traditional chutney artform," Al-Rawi said.
Singh hailed this decision as "a victory for traditional
music and the Indo-Trinidadian culture of T&T" as
he stated that his event was the "largest and most
important in the Indo-Caribbean calendar."
NCFTT was represented by Angela Renaud-Lewis
and Temi Ade-John.
Five police officers attached to a unit in the North-
ern Division and a former police officer were held
aboard a boat in Chaguaramas, yesterday, which
police say belongs to a known drug dealer.
According to police sources, members of the Crim-
inal Gang and Intelligence Unit (CGIU) and Inter-
Agency Task Force, operating on intelligence, contacted
the Coast Guard officers who escorted the boat to
shore just after 11 am from off Carrera Island.
The officers and 20 other people were taken to
the Port-of-Spain CID where they were being profiled
and questioned. Police sources say nothing illegal
was found aboard the vessel but the fact that the
lawmen were associating with men who had a check-
ered criminal history was cause for concern.
Three of the lawmen were held with guns which
police say had to be verified as their service weapons.
The former officer also had a firearm for which he
said he had a permit that had been lodged at a police
Police said the owner of the boat was arrested as
a gang leader during the state of emergency in 2011.
He was also shot in the past during two attempted
murders. He was also kidnapped and the ransom
demand included guns and drugs for his safe release.
held aboard drug
NCFTT loses case
Chutney Soca Monarch goes on
Guitar pan players of defending national large conventional bands title holders Phase II Pan Groove display their joy while playing Len
Boogsie Sharpe's composition of Happiness, as they perform for the judges on Thursday night at the Hamilton Holder Street pan yard
in Woodbrook in preparation for tomorrow's semi-finals at the Queen's Park Savannah. PHOTO: ROBERTO CODALLO
MUSIC IS HAPPINESS
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