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Internet Service Provider’s Liability for Copyright infringement in India Law

As per Section 79(1)(c) of the Information Technology Act, 2000 and Rule 3 clause d of the Intermediary Guidelines Rules, 2011 the Intermediary shall observe due diligence while discharging his duties that there is no infringement of patent, trademark, copyright or other proprietary rights.

Section 52(1)(c) of the Copyright Act, 1957 highlights that transient or incidental storage of a work or a performance for the purpose of providing electronic links, access or integration, where such links, access or integration has not been expressly prohibited by the right holder under the purview of  fair use of copyright. However, the proviso to the section expounds that if the person responsible for the storage of the copy has received a written complaint from the owner of copyright in the work, complaining that such transient or incidental storage is an infringement, such person responsible for the storage shall refrain from facilitating such access for a period of twenty-one days or till he receives an order from the competent court refraining from facilitating access and in case no such order is received before the expiry of such period of twenty-one days, he may continue to provide the facility of such access.

Therefore, the safe harbor provided to intermediaries is pierced on receipt of information that certain infringing/pirated material is available on its website.

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