Home / Education / News /  Delhi HC agrees to hear appeal against order favouring Rameshwari Photocopy

The Delhi high court on Thursday agreed to hear appeals filed by international publishers, including Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press and Taylor and Francis Group, on Wednesday against an order which upheld students’ right to photocopying course material for educational purposes.

The publishers challenged a 16 September ruling of the high court delivered by justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw, which dismissed their plea to restrain Rameshwari Photocopy Service, a shop on the Delhi University campus, from selling photocopies of textbooks and course material.

A two-judge bench headed by justice Pradeep Nandrajog said that the issue needed to be considered and asked the respondents—Rameshwari Photocopy, Delhi University and two associations comprising students and teachers—to respond in the case.

The arguments in the case will be heard on 29 November.

At this stage, the court declined to stay the operation of the 16 September order.

However, the court directed the respondents to maintain a record of the paper purchased and utilized for photocopying course material and the quantity of material photocopied and sold.

Lawyer Prathiba Singh, representing the publishers, told the court that the 16 September ruling on the law ran contrary to an earlier interpretation by a two-judge bench. The court said it would consider this issue when it hears the case in November.

The 94-page ruling from September noted that photocopying and creation of course packs to be used in the course of education by students is covered under provisions of the Copyright Act, 1957.

The verdict found the students’ interest paramount, and focused on the aspect of affordability of low-cost textbooks through photocopying.

The verdict added that through photocopying, students can obtain voluminous course material at a low cost and would not be required to copy each page, which cannot be held as an offence.

The dispute began in August 2012, when publishers brought a case of copyright infringement against Rameshwari Photocopy Service, a licensed vendor on Delhi University’s north campus.

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