Earlier this year, I had reported the legal tussle between Just Dial and Infomedia 18 Limited. Just Dial had accused Infomedia 18 of copyright infringement with respect to the valuable database which has been a result of the extensive research carried out for 14 years,as Infomedia 18 had substantially copied its database and was displaying the same on its website askme.in. The Delhi High Court recognizing the significance and seriousness of the breach allowed an ex parte injunction and restrained Infomedia 18 from running the website till the next date of hearing. Justice Indermeet Kaur noted that in case the order was not passed, Just Dial would face “irreparable loss”. In addition to this, the Court also appointed two officials, in Delhi and Mumbai , respectively, to take in to custody the computer hardware and any other storage media which has been used by askme.in to store any data developed by Just Dial. The matter was next listed on March 25,2010.
Mumbai Mirror reports that Just Dial has now filed a petition in the Bombay High Court to direct the Borivali Metropolitan Magistrate to pass orders under Section 156 (3) of CrPC, which provides for registration of FIR and investigation against the accused. Just Dial’s grievance is that the Magistrate instead has passed an order under Section 200, which provides for inquiry by Magistrate himself, whereas Just Dial seeks registration of an FIR with the Cyber Crime Cell.
Just Dial’s plea before the High Court was that given the magnanimity of the crime, it was not possible for Just Dial to collect evidences on its own and therefore the case should be handed over to the Cyber Cell. Just Dial further pleaded that the Cyber Cell refused to intervene in the matter as the civil suit was pending before the High Court.However, Just Dial avers that pursuing civil remedies is no bar to pursue criminal remedies available.
As Mumbai Mirror further reports:
The petition discloses information about civil suits pending before the Delhi HC, saying Just Dial filed a suit in January seeking damages and restraining Infomedia from using the ‘stolen’ database. On January 29, a single judge passed an order in favour of Just Dial. The Court also appointed Court Commissioners to raid Infomedia’s Delhi and Mumbai premises.According to the petition, during such a raid in Mumbai the local court commissioner found ‘infringing entries’ at Dhirubhai Ambani Knowledge City, and the server was seized.
Infomedia challenged this order in February, and a Division Bench directed CFSL to make a mirror copy of Infomedia’s disk and submit it to the HC. The Bench also asked Infomedia to redevelop its entire database after deleting infringing entries.On March 26, Infomedia filed a counter case against Just Dial alleging theft of its database. Infomedia also sought appointment of a local commissioner, which was granted, but later set aside by a Division Bench on Just Dial’s appeal in May. All these cases are pending before the Delhi High Court. During the hearing on the case at the Bombay HC on October 15, the State stuck to its stand of not interfering in the matter because of pending cases at Delhi.
Justice VM Kanade, however, asked the assistant government pleader to seek instructions from Home Department and adjourned the matter to October 22.