Despite several proposals to regulate the Internet in the country, G.R. Raghavender, Registrar of Copyrights, and Director, Copyright Office, Government of India, has maintained that the Indian government will not entertain such proposals as there is no empirical data to show that doing so will reduce piracy.

Mr. Raghavender was speaking on the sidelines of a two-day workshop on ‘Copyright issues in recording and film industry’, sponsored by the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises and organised at National Law School of India University (NLSIU), here on Tuesday.

Fundamental rights

Regulating the Internet, he said, would be a violation of Article 19(a), which upholds the fundamental right of speech and expression. He stressed on the need to look at alternatives, and develop new business models to tackle piracy over the Internet.

Support for Bill

During the workshop, Mr. Raghavender spoke about the implications of the Copyright (Amendment) Act, 2012 and said that there was “unprecedented support” to pass the Bill earlier this year.

Director T.S. Nagabharana highlighted some of the problems with regard to the transfer of copyrights faced in the Kannada film industry. He also pointed out that regional problems could not be addressed at the Central level. “Each regional film industry has its own practice and you cannot look at Hindi films and develop a model for all regional languages,” he said. He also stressed on the need to ensure that all the stakeholders in cinema benefitted from royalties.

N.S. Sreedhara Murthy, film journalist, said the new amendment had certain discrepancies as the law did not explicitly state who should pay royalties and how much.

Awareness needed

Mr. Raghavender also emphasised on the need to spread awareness on intellectual property rights to protect the creative rights of people.