[Wikimediaindia-l] India map and indian laws

Gautam John gautam at prathambooks.org
Tue Feb 15 12:50:21 UTC 2011

This isn't an easy question to answer:

There is the National Map Policy and the Guidelines:

http://www.surveyofindia.gov.in/tenders/National Map Policy.htm

Which states:

"Export of all maps/digital data in 1: 250K and larger scales through
any means is prohibited vide Ministry of Finance (Department of
Revenue) Notification No. 118-Cus./F.No.21/ 5/62-Cus. I/VIII dt. 4th
May 1963. Digital Topograhical data will be licensed to only Indian
individuals, organisations, firms or companies."

However, I do not know if this means maps/digital data built upon SoI
maps or *any* maps so created or what the definition of export it. My
reading, OSM/Google Map Creator et. al. might violate this where the
resolution is "1: 250K and larger". If I understand correctly, most
maps on Wikipedia about India should be okay. Or where the map is
created outside of India.

And this is problem number 1.

Then there is this:

"In addition, the SOI is currently preparing City Maps. These City
Maps will be on large scales in WGS-84 datum and in public domain. The
contents of such maps will be decided by the SOI in consultation with
Ministry of Defence."

No idea what they mean by public domain and this is problem 2.


Which is just rather difficult to parse. AFAIK, it is illegal to
*show* a map, in India, that does not conform to the SoI principles.

One option - show more than one map, which is purely a risk mitigation
exercise. Or, show one map to those coming from Indian IPs - I don't
even know if this is possible. Third, lobby for a change of rules
which is unlikely in the short term.

More when I learn something new.

Thank you.



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