Mr Bodhiratna Gautam Fulzele v. Mr K.M. Acharya & Ors.

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Mr Bodhiratna Gautam Fulzele v. Mr K.M. Acharya & Ors.

Mr Bodhiratna Gautam Fulzele v. Mr K.M. Acharya & Ors.
In the Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal
Cyber Appeal No. 19/2015
Before Mr. Shiva Kirti Singh, Chairperson and Mr. A.K. Bhargava, Member
Decided on November 1, 2018

Relevancy of the case: Liability under Section 43A for the existence of a fake/deceptive website

Statutes & Provisions Involved

  • The Information Technology Act, 2000 (Section 57)

Relevant Facts of the Case

  • The respondents of the case created a website with symbols and features which resembled the website of the governmental agency, who is also a respondent in this case.
  • The appellant made a cheque of Rs. 4,00,000/- to the fake website created and it was transferred to one the person’s account who created the website. He further had a loss of Rs 17,000/-.
  • The case was filed as it amounted to fraud. Upon investigation, the concerned account was frozen.
  • An allegation was inflicted against the respondent, the governmental agency, that it failed to protect its data and bring up action against such fraudulent activities.
  • This case was dismissed as it was found that there was no breach of provisions under the Information Technology Act, 2000 without granting damages of Rs. 6,00,000/-. However, he received Rs. 4,00,000/- into his account. The additional Rs. 2,00,000/- was not deposited and hence, he filed an appeal under Section 57 of the Information Technology Act, 2000.

Opinion of the Bench

  • The appeal was against the agency only and not the parties involved in creating the web portal. Therefore, the bench found no factual error or any interference in law. The governmental agency did not lose any data valuable to the appellant. The information (symbols and slogans) were used to create a fraudulent web portal.
  • The bench found no merit in paying damages for the loss of data which was the property of the agency.

Final Decision

  • According to the opinion formulated by the bench, the appeal was found to be of no merit and so it was dismissed.

This case summary has been prepared by Gitanjali Sadan, an undergraduate student at Symbiosis Law School, Hyderabad, during her internship with The Cyber Blog India in June/July 2020.

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