Bombay HC grants injunction against Thomson Press for reprinting of Bhagwat Gita copyrighted by Bhaktivedanta Book Trust

Bombay High Court: The Court recently dealt with the copyright protection of translated version of Bhagvad Gita. The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust alleged that its copyright has been violated by Thomson Press by copying Srimad Bhagvata- a translated, reprinted version of the Bhagavad Gita. It contended that Thomson Press had reprinted a ‘classic’ version of Srimad Bhagvatam, a translation in which they held copyright.

The Court noticed that the odd thing about this reprint is that it did not even claim to be an independent work and was fact a reprint and a reproduction of the plaintiff’s work. It even claimed to have been printed under a license from the plaintiff to print and publish the work and other works of Swami Prabhupada. However, there was no such license granted.

The Single Bench of  G.S. Patel, J. said that there was a strong prima facie case made out by plaintiffs for the ownership of the work as the copyright of their work on the translation was registered. On making these observations, the Court granted an interim injunction to prevent Thomson Press from printing and reproducing the copyrighted work in any manner until the suit is finally disposed off. [The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust v. Thomson Press (India) Ltd., SUIT (L) NO. 78 of 2017, , decided on 08.02.2017]

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