×
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Complete probe into beedi company’s plaint on copyright violation, Karnataka HC tells cops

In August 2022, the company noticed that some people were selling substandard beedis under the name ‘Qai Sulthana Beedi’ at various places
Last Updated : 03 June 2023, 21:24 IST

Follow Us :

Comments

The police cannot keep a complaint pending on the grounds that the parties are fighting a civil proceeding on the same fact matrix, the High Court of Karnataka has ruled.

Justice Krishna S Dixit said this while directing the police to complete the investigation on a complaint by a Beedi manufacturing company that alleged fake beedis were being sold in its name in violation of the Copyright Act.

The petitioner, Mangalore New Sultan Beedi Works Company, claimed that it had obtained distinct copyrights for artistic designs over the beedi packs and its label as ‘New Sultan Beedi Label’ and ‘4 No. Beedis Label’.

In August 2022, the company noticed that some people were selling substandard beedis under the name ‘Qai Sulthana Beedi’ at various places.

A civil suit was filed against the Mysuru-based company, which was selling the fake beedis, before a Mangaluru court for infringement of copyrights. Similarly, a police complaint was also filed at the Mandi police station in Mysuru on November 30, 2022. As the sale of fake beedis continued, the company filed another complaint before the police.

The company contended that the police did not take action citing the pendency of a civil suit before the Mangaluru court.

Justice Dixit pointed out that the Copyright Act provides for both civil remedy and criminal prosecution in the case of such an infringement and the outcome of one does not depend upon the outcome of another, subject to all just exceptions.

“The infringement of copyright gives rise to a cause of action on which a civil proceeding like an Injunctive Suit can be structured. It also can give rise to a cause of action for the institution of a criminal proceeding. In the former, it is preventive, remedial, compensatory or otherwise, whereas, in the latter, it is primarily punitive. The object, nature and outcome of these proceedings, thus are not the same. That is how the statutory scheme is enacted by the Parliament. Merely because a civil dispute is being fought between the parties, the criminal proceedings cannot be halted, per se, on that ground,” Justice Dixit said.

The court directed the police to complete the investigation within an outer limit of three months, adding that delay, if brooked, may result in an adverse entry being made in the service records of the concerned police official.

ADVERTISEMENT
Published 03 June 2023, 19:48 IST

Follow us on :

Follow Us

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT