Begin typing your search above and press return to search.
News Updates

Delhi High Court Restrains WhatsApp & Telegram From 'Illegally Circulating' Copies Of Times Of India, Navbharat Times E-Newspapers

Sparsh Upadhyay
24 May 2021 2:05 PM GMT
Delhi High Court Restrains WhatsApp & Telegram From Illegally Circulating Copies Of Times Of India, Navbharat Times E-Newspapers
x

In an interim order passed last week, the Delhi High Court has restrained social networking platforms WhatsApp and Telegram and certain other individuals from allegedly illegally circulating e-papers of Bennett, Coleman and Company Ltd (Times of India and sister publication Navbharat Times) on their respective platforms. Noting that Plaintiff had made out a prima facie case, the Bench...

Your free access to Live Law has expired
To read the article, get a premium account.
    Your Subscription Supports Independent Journalism
Subscription starts from
10% discount
999
899+GST
(150 INR per month)
(For 6 Months)
Premium account gives you:
  • Ad Free Content
  • Special And Exclusive Stories First Available To Subscribers only
  • Copy Of Judgments/ Orders With Every Reports
  • Copy Of Petitions (Subject to Consent From Concerned Lawyers)
  • Weekly Round Ups Of Supreme Court High Court Judgments/Orders
  • Monthly Digests Of Supreme Court And High Courts
  • Yearly Digests Of Supreme Court And High Courts
  • Live Updates Of Supreme Court And High Courts Hearings
  • WhatsApp Updates
  • News Letters
Already a subscriber?
Your free access to Live Law has expired
To read the article, get a premium account.
    Your Subscription Supports Independent Journalism
Subscription starts from
1,499+GST
(For 1 Year)
Premium account gives you:
  • Ad Free Content
  • Special And Exclusive Stories First Available To Subscribers only
  • Copy Of Judgments/ Orders With Every Reports
  • Copy Of Petitions (Subject to Consent From Concerned Lawyers)
  • Weekly Round Ups Of Supreme Court High Court Judgments/Orders
  • Monthly Digests Of Supreme Court And High Courts
  • Yearly Digests Of Supreme Court And High Courts
  • Live Updates Of Supreme Court And High Courts Hearings
  • WhatsApp Updates
  • News Letters
Already a subscriber?

In an interim order passed last week, the Delhi High Court has restrained social networking platforms WhatsApp and Telegram and certain other individuals from allegedly illegally circulating e-papers of Bennett, Coleman and Company Ltd (Times of India and sister publication Navbharat Times) on their respective platforms.

Noting that Plaintiff had made out a prima facie case, the Bench of Justice Jayant Nath said,

"The plaintiff being an exclusive owner of the copyright in the said literary work, therefore, possesses all rights to it in any material forms. Defendants are illegally circulating copies of e-newspaper owned by the plaintiff which violate the rights of the plaintiff."

With this, the Court also issued notices to WhatsApp and Telegram, and certain other individuals, who are allegedly the administrators of various groups on the platforms and are indulged in sharing e-papers associated with Bennett, Coleman and Company Ltd publication.

Case in brief

It was the case of the plaintiff that the newspaper The Times of India belongs to the plaintiff and is India's most widely circulated English daily and is rated amongst world's six best newspapers and also attracts a daily circulation of more than a million copies.

It was submitted that news articles/contents published on plaintiff's website as well as in its newspapers constitute "the original literary work" within the meaning of copyright thereby being entitled copyright protection under Section 14 of the Copyright Act.

It was argued that Plaintiff was the exclusive owner of the copyright of said literary works, possessing the rights to reproduce the same in any material form and also to protect from infringement of its copyright.

It was further alleged that unauthorized and illegal circulation/distribution of the plaintiffs proprietary e-newspapers was taking place by the user of the platform of WhatsApp as well as by various websites providing the plaintiffs e-newspaper for free download.

It was further stated that due to access and permission granted by defendant No.1 and 3 to various users numerous channels and groups are created by known and unknown administrator/users wherein various e-papers of the plaintiff have been unauthorizedly and illegally uploaded in PDF form on daily basis.

Lastly, it was argued that the plaintiff being exclusive owner of the copyright in the said literary work, therefore, possessed all rights to it in any material forms and the defendants were illegally circulating copies of e-newspaper owned by the plaintiff which violates the rights of the plaintiff.

Relief claimed

The Court was hearing an application under Order 39 Rule 1 and 2 CPC filed by Bennett, Coleman, and Company Ltd seeking an ex parte injunction to restrain the defendants (Including WhatsApp and Telegram) from copying, reproducing, adopting, distributing, transmitting, disseminating in any manner, etc. on "WhatsApp", "Telegram" etc. through mobile or in any other domain name or on any website /portal/domain or in any manner to infringe the rights in the e-newspaper of the plaintiffs published by the plaintiff through print and on their websites epaper.timesofindia.com and epaper.navbharattimes.com in which the plaintiff owns a valid and subsisting copyright and trademark.

Case title - Bennett Coleman Co. Ltd v. WhatsApp inc & Ors. [CS (COMM) 232/2021 & I.As. 6565-6567/2021]

Click Here To Download Order

Read Order

Next Story
Share it