PATNA COURT GRANTS ANTICIPATORY BAIL TO CLOSE AIDE OF PRASHANT KISHOR IN COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT CASE
The Court of Md. Rustam, the Additional District & Sessions Judge-XII, Patna Sadar granted anticipatory bail to a close aide of Prashant Kishor (Founder, IPAC and Jan Suraj Abhiyan) in a case related to copyright infringement in which he himself was an accused. Informant of this case Shashwat Gautam in his application dated 25.02.2020 addressed to SHO Patliputra Police Station stated that he isan active member of Congress Party and for the purpose of upcoming Bihar Legislative Election, he was preparing for election campaign in his office at 201/A, Patliputra Colony, Patna and in this work data collection, planning for campaign, work planning, graphics and logo design and other intellectual materials were being created and accumulated and this campaign was named as "Bihar ki Baat" and for digital execution, www.biharkibaat.in was registered on 07.01.2020. It is further stated that in preparation of this campaign during December, 2019, in the beginning one Osama Khursheed, without taking any money, started helping and working with the informant as a political volunteer. He has contested election in Patna University in the year 2018-19 on the ticket of JDU for the post of Joint Secretary. The informant was knowing him since October, 2017. It is alleged that in the beginning of February 2020, Osama Khursheed stopped coming to the office and he went missing with a laptop of the office. That laptop was containing collected data, design and work planning of campaign, graphics, logo design and other collected and created intellectual property. After calling him number of times and messaging through whatsapp, Osama Khursheed did not return the laptop but later on Osama Khursheed returned the laptop. It is further alleged that Prashant Kishor, a person who works in the field of election campaigning, on 18th February, 2020 called a press conference and showing the informant's collected data, planning of campaign etc. as his own intellectual property and started a campaign in the name and style of "Baat Bihar ki". It was further stated that later on, the informant came to know that Osama Khursheed worked in conspiracy with Prashant Kishor, stole the informant's intellectual property and gave the same to Prashant Kishor who is associate in a company named Indian PAC Consulting Pvt. Ltd. It is further stated that domain name "Baat Bihar ki" was purchased two days ago on 16.02.2020 and all the intellectual properties were put in this website by Prashant Kishor taking credit for the same. It is further stated that knowing his experience in election campaign, Prashant Kishor was knowing that he could be benefited by this intellectual property. On the basis of this application, FIR was registered vide Patliputra P.S. Case No. 94/20 dated 25.02.2020 for the offences under sections 467/468/471/420/406/120 B of the Indian Penal Code.
While granting anticipatory bail, the Court observed that though the provisions of Copyright Act has not been invoked here but a very important aspect of copyright laws is that it protects expressions of ideas rather than the ideas themselves. That is copyright can be sought for the novelty of the way a particular idea is expressed, not only for the originality of the idea itself. This is called the idea-expression dichotomy and is a frequently used legal doctrine in copyright dispute resolution. This principle recognizes that ideas are abstract and can be common to everyone. What deserves legal protection is the creative way an arctic expresses the said idea. Thus, it becomes important to be able to distinguish between ideas and expression. In the present case the Informant himself says that he has lost his “idea” to Prashant Kishor. This is being alleged without any legal proof or justification. Considering the facts and circumstances, the court granted him bail.
CASE NAME- OSAMA KHURSHEED VS. THE STATE OF BIHAR, ABP NO. 6031/2023
ADVOCATE FOR THE PETITIONER-VISHAL KUMAR SINGH, ADVOCATE
ADVOCATE FOR THE RESPONDENT- R.K.SINGH, ADDITIONAL P.P.