The Evolving Legal Landscape of Intermediary Liability in India: A Deep Dive

The Evolving Legal Landscape of Intermediary Liability in India: A Deep Dive

Rajendra Kumar   6 March, 2023


India’s tryst with internet intermediary liability can be traced back almost two decades to when the Information Technology Act (IT Act), 2000 saw the light of day. With the rapid evolution of both the internet and its users in India, it would not be a stretch to say that the legislators in India have had to constantly ensure that the applicable laws stay updated and relevant. Going forward, given the recent framing of rules – ‘the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 (2021 Rules)’, intermediaries will face an increasing compliance burden and more stringent due diligence obligations.

This article is a deep dive into the changing landscape of intermediary liability in India. Some of the landmark cases that have led to this evolution have also been discussed.


The Internet has evolved over the past more than two decades from its Web 1.0 avatar which permitted only a passive one-way user interaction with the content posted on the World Wide Web (WWW) to a Web 2.0 collaborative and interactive user interaction where the user is at once a recipient and a creator of content. The latter environment allows for businesses and individuals to access, host and transmit third party content or services and conduct transactions over the Internet in a virtual reflection of the real world with banks, markets, book shops, social networks, learning centers along with many other things.

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Rajendra Kumar

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