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California’s Autodesk on anti-piracy drive in India

Nov 27- Bangalore, India – Software company Autodesk Inc. promised an aggressive campaign against software piracy in India, saying unauthorized use of its products had increased in the past year.

“This is simply not acceptable. India is going the wrong way. We might start questioning the validity of our investments in India if piracy cannot be contained,” Andre Pravaz, regional director of Autodesk’s South Asia Pacific operation, told reporters in the software hub of Bangalore. Autodesk specializes in computer-aided design, or CAD.

Pravaz said company surveys found that piracy was rampant among training institutes that lured students on the promise of jobs with high pay. The San Rafael, California-headquartered company has cooperated with anti-piracy officials and the National Association of Software and Service Companies, an industry group, in raiding illegal users in India during the last few months, Pravaz said.

“We will not stop. Those who steal our software have my personal guarantee that we will step up our efforts to nab them,” he said. Pravaz named several training institutes and design companies that he said were using Autodesk software illegally.

The Autodesk-aided raids follow similar action by the company’s rival, Parametric Technology Corp., which pushed authorities to file criminal charges against unauthorized users of its Pro-Engineer software earlier this month.

Autodesk’s Autocad design software is the most widely used program for two-dimensional design projects in India. The company says its Inventor program enjoys a 9 percent share in the three-dimensional design market. The company employs about 50 people in India. Its Bangalore center provides technical support to Autodesk’s customers in English-speaking countries. The center also helps customize Autodesk design software to meet specific user needs.