In India, copyright infringement  is addressed under the Copyright Act, 1957. This Act grants the creator of original works the exclusive rights to reproduce, distribute, and display their works. Infringement occurs when these rights are violated without the creator’s permission. Here are the key points and some case studies related to copyright infringement in India:

 Key Points of Copyright Infringement in India

  1. Exclusive Rights: The creator has the exclusive rights to reproduce, distribute, perform, display, and create derivative works.
  2. Infringement Acts: Unauthorized copying, distribution, public display, or creation of derivative works constitutes infringement.
  3. Remedies for Infringement:

– Civil Remedies: Injunctions, damages, and accounts of profits.

– Criminal Remedies: Fines and imprisonment for severe cases.

  1. Copyright Registration: While copyright registration is not mandatory, it serves as prima facie evidence in court.

Case Studies

  1. Amarnath Sehgal v. Union of India (2005)

– Background: Renowned sculptor Amarnath Sehgal sued the Indian government for removing his mural from Vigyan Bhawan without his permission.

– Outcome: The Delhi High Court ruled in favor of Sehgal, acknowledging his moral rights as an artist. The court awarded him compensation for the unauthorized removal and destruction of his work.


  1. India TV Independent News Service Pvt. Ltd. v. Yashraj Films Pvt. Ltd. (2013)

– Background: India TV used clips from Yashraj Films’ movies in their news broadcasts without permission.

– Outcome: The Delhi High Court held that such use was not fair dealing and constituted copyright infringement. India TV was ordered to pay damages to Yashraj Films.

  1. R.G. Anand v. M/s. Delux Films & Ors (1978)

– Background: Playwright R.G. Anand claimed that the film “New Delhi” copied substantial parts of his play “Hum Hindustani.”

– Outcome: The Supreme Court of India ruled that while both works had similarities, the film did not amount to an infringement as it had an independent expression and was not a substantial reproduction of the play.

  1. Penguin Books Ltd. v. India Book Distributors and Others (1985)

– Background: Penguin Books sued India Book Distributors for unauthorized reprinting and distribution of its copyrighted books.

– Outcome: The Delhi High Court granted an injunction against the defendants and awarded damages to Penguin Books, emphasizing the importance of protecting literary works from unauthorized reproduction.


Steps to Address Copyright Infringement in India

  1. Document the Infringement: Collect evidence of the unauthorized use of your artwork.
  2. Send a Legal Notice: Notify the infringer, demanding they cease the infringing activity.
  3. File a Suit: If the infringement continues, you can file a suit in a court with jurisdiction.
  4. Seek Legal Advice: Consult an intellectual property rights lawyer for guidance.

Understanding these aspects and referring to these case studies can help you navigate the legal landscape of copyright infringement in India.