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May 30, 2018

Scope Of INDRP Remedies Does Not Include Confiscation Of Domain Name

The Delhi High Court has held that the .In Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (INDRP) does not permit an Arbitrator to confiscate the domain name.

Lens.com, Inc. had filed a complaint under the INDRP against the respondent, seeking transfer of the domain name <lens.in> registered in favour of the respondent, to itself. The Arbitrator held that since the Complainant had failed to prove its rights in the disputed domain name and the Respondent claimed to be unrelated to the domain named, the disputed domain name be cancelled, and be confiscated by the Registry. Aggrieved with this Award, the Petitioner approached the Delhi High Court [Lens.com, Inc. v. Ju J Friend International [OMP (Comm.) 223/2016], alleging that (1) the Arbitrator does not have the power to confiscate the domain name; and (2) upon cancelling the domain name, its transfer to the Petitioner was mandatory.

The Delhi High Court observed that the INDRP does not make transfer of a domain name mandatory upon its cancellation; and that the complainant would independently have to establish its right to such a domain name for it to be transferred. The Delhi High Court set aside the Arbitrator’s direction that the domain name be confiscated, observing that such a direction could not be sustained.

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