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Gujarat HC Rules No Copyright Act Violation for Sale of Duplicate Computer Hardware Spare Parts

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Published on: November 21, 2023 at 17:50 IST

In a recent judgment, the Gujarat High Court declared that the sale of duplicate spare parts of computer hardware does not warrant prosecution under the Copyright Act, 1957.

Justice Sandeep Bhatt, while quashing the FIR, emphasized that these spare parts are not classified as literary, musical, or artistic works, and therefore, the Copyright Act is not applicable.

Justice Bhatt stated, “Apart from that, even if, the FIR is taken at its face value, it refers to items, which do not fall within the artistic work as defined under Section 2(c) of the Copyright Act, 1957. It cannot be said that the spare-part is literal work or musical work.”

The ruling came in response to a petition filed by Mayur Shah, seeking the quashing of an FIR and criminal case alleging the sale of duplicate computer spare parts. The FIR was lodged by an Investigating Officer of IPR Vigilance Indian Company in 2014 under Sections 51 and 63 of the Copyright Act.

Shah’s counsel, Sachin Vasavada, argued that the Copyright Act did not apply to the sale of computer spare parts and related goods dealt with by the petitioner.

Justice Bhatt, after considering the submissions and reviewing the FIR, concluded that no case was made out against the petitioner for the alleged offenses under Sections 51 and 63 of the Copyright Act, 1957, read with Sections 406 and 420 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860.

Referring to the precedent in the case of Binita Rahul Shah vs. State of Gujarat, the court held that continuing criminal proceedings against the petitioner would amount to an abuse of the legal process.

Consequently, the court quashed and set aside the impugned FIR, allowing the application and exercising its inherent power under Section 482 of the Code.

Case Title: Mayur Kanaiyalal Shah V. State Of Gujarat & 2 Others