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Sec 31B, Copyright Act 1957: Compulsory Licence for Benefit of Disabled

Section 31B (Compulsory licence for benefit of disabled) under Chapter VI (Licences) of the Copyright Act 1957

❝(1) Any person working for the benefit of persons with disability on a profit basis or for business may apply to the Appellate Board, in such form and manner and accompanied by such fee as may be prescribed, for a compulsory licence to publish any work in which copyright subsists for the benefit of such persons, in a case to which clause (zb) of sub-section (1) of section 52 does not apply and the Appellate Board shall dispose of such application as expeditiously as possible and endeavour shall be made to dispose of such application within a period of two months from the date of receipt of the application.

(2) The Appellate Board may, on receipt of an application under sub-section (1), inquire, or direct such inquiry as it considers necessary to establish the credentials of the applicant and satisfy itself that the application has been made in good faith.

(3) If the Appellate Board is satisfied, after giving to the owners of rights in the work a reasonable opportunity of being heard and after holding such inquiry as it may deem necessary, that a compulsory licence needs to be issued to make the work available to the disabled, it may direct the Registrar of Copyrights to grant to the applicant such a licence to publish the work.

(4) Every compulsory licence issued under this section shall specify the means and format of publication, the period during which the compulsory licence may be exercised and, in the case of issue of copies, the number of copies that may be issued including the rate or royalty:

Provided that where the Appellate Board has issued such a compulsory licence it may, on a further application and after giving reasonable opportunity to the owners of rights, extend the period of such compulsory licence and allow the issue of more copies as it may deem fit.❞



Section 31B of the Copyright Act 1957 was inserted by the Copyright (Amendment) Act 2012 (No. 27 of 2012), sec. 18, w.e.f. 21-Jun-2012.

Further, Section 31B of the Copyright Act 1957 was amended by:
- the Finance Act, 2017 (No. 7 of 2017), sec. 160, w.e.f. 26-May-2017.

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