Document Type : Research Article
Doctrine of fair dealing is an important part of Indian Copyright law. It permits reproduction of the copyrighted work or use in a manner, which, but for the exception carved out would have amount to infringement of copyrights. Sec 52 (1) (a) of the Copyright Act, 1957 provides for the legal provision as to fair dealing. Even though, it is a well established and well recognized principle, the doctrine of fair dealing is said to have got a new life through a landmark judgement in Delhi University Photocopy Case1. To summarily state the decision, the Delhi high court held that the making of ‘course packs’ for the purpose of education was well within the bounds of the law and did not amount to copyright infringement. While many hail this judgment for promoting ‘access to education’, respectful disagreements exist with its legal reasoning, methods of interpretation and the resultant legal outcomes. The role photocopiers play in the lives of students in inevitable. Nevertheless, excess of anything is catastrophic at least to the exclusive copyright owners whose copyrighted work is subjected to extreme overuse and misuse by Photostatting. The idea behind granting copyrights to author of books is to promote literary work and secure the ideas which author wished to preserve and share only by legal publication which is being affected through this decision. Through this paper, the concept of fair dealing under Indian law is explained and it analyses the judgement of the case, explore the legality of photocopying of copyrighted work and extent to which copyrighted work is permitted to be photocopied.