Once upon a time, there was a beggar in Kerala, who used to sing self-made folk songs on the streets of Cochin. The coins offered by the people were the source of bread and butter for that poor man. One day, while he was on the street, he got surprised to hear a song from the nearby home. It was a famous film song from a TV Channel. What surprised him was, it was his self-composed song that he used to sing on the street! As an illiterate man, initially he felt proud of himself, but when the public told the real story, he became sad – somebody has stolen his song and published the same under their name. Out of mercy, some reporters published this story in a leading newspaper, but unfortunately nothing happened! For that poor man, filing a case against copyright violation, getting publicity and awards were not the matters, bread and butter was his major concern. Even if he had gone for a case, he would have defeated easily as he had no copyright for his songs. This is not the only one incident; we often come across hundreds of similar incidences everywhere. Tomorrow, we may be the victims of similar situation unless we take the copyright for our own works, which may be songs, poems, articles, stories, novels, film scripts, art works, books, research works, etc.
In India, under HRD ministry, there is a copyright office in New Delhi. Getting a copyright is very easy, and it takes only 100 rupees if we contact them directly. But there are many agents who charge a huge amount as commission. What you have to do is take the two copies of the manuscript and fill the three copies of the application form, and send the same along with DD amount mentioned in the application form. (It was 50/- before two years). Within 6 months you will get the attested copy of your work along with copyright certificate.
There is a separate office for patent registration, which has four regional offices in metro cities. If we go directly, it takes only 1000/-, but agents charge 10000/- or more as service charge. This situation really happens everywhere – manufactures and consumers get less, but agents always take the benefits!!!
Dr Muhammed Rafeeque