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October 25, 1999
Software pirates busted in BombayThe National Association of Software and Service Companies, the Business Software Alliance and the crime branch of Bombay police have raided six locations of software resellers in the city.
NASSCOM President Dewang Mehta said large software resellers were raided. These are: Computer World on D N Road and Mahendra Video and M Computer on Lamington Road.
The software seized included pirated versions of software belonging to Adobe Systems Inc, Autodesk Inc, Microsoft Corporation, Corel and Macromedia.
The Bombay police arrested five persons following the raids.
The accused were produced before the magistrate but were refused bail and remanded to police custody for 10 days.
Meanwhile the police aim to get information from the offenders about the source and suppliers of these counterfeit goods.
Naushad of Computer World was arrested for the same offence about three months back by the Thane police, Mehta explained. Thane is a large district adjoining Bombay.
Mehta said that "In order to curb piracy we have initiated a series of actions in Bangalore, Hyderabad, Delhi, Ludhiana and Pune over the past few months besides the above enforcement actions and steps taken to include setting up anti-piracy hotlines, policy awareness, public awareness and advertisement campaigns.
In the above cases, the dealers are selling and copying illegal counterfeit software that is unlicensed, without manuals and certificates of authenticity.
Such illegal practices are common among dealers and are widespread in the entire country. As per a BSA and NASSOCM survey conducted, the piracy rate in India is estimated at 60 per cent and revenue losses due to software piracy are estimated at Rs 9 billion.
"We are more persistent in our efforts to curb piracy than the pirates are to encourage it. We closely monitor the activities of the pirates and they are always under scrutiny. So they cannot get away scot-free," Mehta claimed.
Last week, both NASSCOM and BSA helped in a civil search and seizure order against a Delhi based software training centre.
Mehta said it is wrong to believe that copyright laws in India are without teeth. "Copyright law in India is one of the toughest in the world," he assured.
In India, copyright of software is protected under the Indian Copyright Act. The problem in India is not of law. It is that of enforcement of laws, he explained.
Piracy in India is estimated to be over 60 per cent, accounting for a loss of Rs 7 billion annually to the industry.
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