Today, The Copyright Act (Amendment) Bill, 2012 was passed by the Indian Lok Sabha, which witnessed unusual unanimity on the matter with members from all parties supporting the measure for creative artistes whose benefits are cornered by producers. Song writers, artistes and performers, deprived of their dues so far, can now claim royalty for their creations.
The bill, passed by the Rajya Sabha on May 17, declares authors as owners of the copyright, which cannot be assigned to the producers as was the practice till now. The bill makes it mandatory for broadcasters — both radio and television — to pay royalty to the owners of the copyright each time a work of art is broadcast.
It bans people from bringing out cover versions of any literary, dramatic or musical work for five years from the first recording of the original creation.
The bill received overwhelming support including the Opposition which appreciated the government for such a step, though belatedly.
History of Copyright Law of India:
Copyright is a right given by the law to creators of literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works and producers of cinematograph films and sound recordings. In fact, it is a bundle of rights including, inter alia, rights of reproduction, communication to the public, adaptation and translation of the work. There could be slight variations in the composition of the rights depending on the work.
The Indian Copyright Act, 1957 governs the system of copyrights in India. Copyright Law in the country was governed by the Copyright Act of 1914, was essentially the extension of the British Copyright Act, 1911 to India,and borrowed extensively from the new Copyright Act of the United Kingdom of 1956. Now Indian Copyright is governed by the Indian Copyright Act, 1957.