What Are The Rules Related To Copyright Expiry in India?


A copyright grants protection to the author/creator of an original work by preventing the copy/republication of such works without his or her consent.

According to Nishith Desai Associates, a copyright grants protection to the creator and his representatives for the works and prevents such works from being copied or reproduced without his/ their consent. 

The creator of a work can prohibit or authorize anyone to: 
■ reproduce the work in any form, such as print, sound ,video, etc; 
■ use the work for a public performance, such as a play or a musical work; 
■ make copies/recordings of the work.; 
■ broadcast it in various forms; 
■ translate the same to other languages 

Works protected under the Copyright Act in India. 

The following works are protected under the copyright act in India: 

(a) Original literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works (including photographs, painting and portraits); 
(b) Cinematographic films; and 
(c) Sound recordings; 

Note that a computer programme is treated as a “literary work. 

Is Copyright Registration compulsory for protection under the copyright law in India?

No, a copyright registration is not a pre-requisite for claiming protection under the copyright law in India. Non copyrighted ‘original’ materials are granted equal protection under the copyright law in India.   

What are the Rules Related to Copyright Expiry in India?

The rules related to copyright expiry in India can be summarized as follows: 

The general rule is that copyright lasts for 60 years

In the case of original literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works the 60-year period is counted from the year following the death of the author
In the case of cinematography films, sound recordings, photographs, posthumous publications, anonymous publications, works of government and works of international organisations, the 60-year period commences from the date of publication.


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