Public Comments Requested by .IN Registry – Proposed Change in .IN registrant Agreemenet

.IN Registry has requested a public opinion about restricting the .IN registrants from buying and selling .IN domains at a higher price.

IN registry is allowing public registrations since 16th Feb 2005 , prior to that it was restricted to only trade mark holders to request a domain name registration. It’s close to 18+ years registrants from almost 150+ countries have registered circa 3 million .IN domains.

Some of those registrants are also involved in selling domain names for higher prices, its been a recognised business model across several domain extensions and a recognised international practice in trading domain names for profit. Several thousands of .IN domain names are publicly traded among registrants in the last 18+ years time. There is no formal objection from registry on this topic for last 18+ years and also the announcement issued by the registry is clearly saying there is no such restriction for registrants in buying and selling domains for higher prices.

Registrars are restricted from involving in after market activity from day1 to comply with the competition law of India.

Registry believes some of these registrars who can’t directly or indirectly participate in after market activity are using their proxies to conduct such practices. This is causing the issue and it sounds like they are in search of finding a solution.

Jargon decoded:


registry maintains all administrative data of the domain and generates a zone file which contains the addresses of the nameservers for each domain. Each registry is an organization that manages the registration of domain names within the domains for which it is responsible, controls the policies of domain name allocation, and technically operates its domain. It may also fulfill the function of a domain name registrar, or may delegate that function to other entities

e.g: .IN registry ( NIXI ) , Verisign ( for .com names )


A domain name registrar is a business that handles the reservation of domain names as well as the assignment of IP addresses for those domain names. Registar act as an intermediate party between the registry & registrant

e.g: GoDaddy , BigRock ..etc


The end users who register a domain name. Registrant could be an individual or a legal entity.

e.g: or ..etc

Here is the opinion of on this subject: always believes in an open market , we have been advocating this open market from day1.

Any restriction on .IN registrants is taking .IN extension back to where it was in 2010 and registry must not support such a practice as it’s not lead to any positive outcomes.

We have also tried to highlight some of those details:

  • .IN registry has given an opportunity for 18 years for those intellectual property holders to register their domain names and also given a mechanism to protect their IP rights via INDRP dispute process . Circa 3 million domain name registrations are only registered inspite of being the ccTLD for the worlds populous nation. Also it’s important to note , at least circa 0.5 to 1 million domain names are originating from outside India.
  • India has lowest domain penetration ratio compare to the many developed economies , bringing any restrictions on registrants make it very difficult for registrars to operate , this force them to abandon the ship of .IN leading to much slower adoption of .IN
  • Almost 1700+ domain extensions are available , so registrars has plenty of choice to promote those extensions which has less restrictions , .IN will loose in the end
  • Registrants also dont like to hear restrictions when they register something , its leading to lower adoption
  • The problem statement here is “How to make registrars comply to the agreement they have signed?” – the number of such registrars involved are not exceeding 200 of them. If registrary can’t handle the compliance 200 of them directly , how they can handle or govern 1 million to 2 million registrants as of today (or) few million registrants in the future. Any restriction on registrants is foolish activity as its impractical to implement such rules and it forces registrars to abandon the .IN ship
  • Challenges to govern circa 200 registrars effectively must not bring an impact on the overall .IN ecosystem. e.g: a domain name is a vital assset in any online business. A business is developed on a .IN name may sell the asset to some other business to make a profit. As part of that .IN domain name also will be sold as part of that equation and also businesses values the .IN domain name at a higher price than what they have bought 15 years before. This restriction forces business to value their domain name value same as what they have bought 15 years before. which is like forcing someone devalue their own asset.
  • Also those registrants who has registered generic .IN domain names with the intention of selling for profit ( aka domainers or domain investors ) will abandon the ship of .IN extension leading to a drop of 1 million registrations in a year time. It means a loss of 33% of the growth achieved in the last 18 years time.
  • Registrants who has registered from last 18 years very likely to take .IN registry to court in several countries leading to mulitple lawsuites to handle by registry / registrars and also .IN registry is going to earn bad reputation internationally
  • The best successful domain extension is .com, one of the main reasons why .com has been successful is it’s open registration & open trading policy / agreement. Open registration without restrictions attracts investment into a domain name extension, those who invested will not keep quiet they will promote the domain name extension to increase their asset values.

Full details of the announcements can be seen below:

Draft Amendments in Terms and Conditions for Registrants
NIXI, is a not for profit Organization under section 8 of the Companies Act 2013, and was registered on 19th June, 2003. Government of India has authorized NIXI as .IN Registry, since January 2005. Now .IN domain names are available to anyone on first-come-first-served basis. For more details, please visit

.IN is India's top-level domain on the Internet. Like .COM, .IN can be used for e-mail, Web sites, and other applications. But unlike other domains, .IN is a unique symbol of India and its role in the world. NIXI operates the .IN Registry under the policy framework of Government of India which can be accessible

NIXI signs Registrar Accreditation Agreement at the time of accreditation of Registrars which can be accessed at Under the said agreement clause 6.1 highlighted states " The Registrars will desist, at all times, from involving themselves, or through their resellers, in any way in the squatting, grabbing, hoarding, infringement, auctioning, drop catch or selling of the .IN domain names at a exceptionally higher price than the published MRP, they are regularly charging from the public. Any such involvement of the Registrar will lead to the termination of Accreditation, financial penalty and legal action as per the provisions of the Laws applicable in India."

There is no clause mentioned in the Terms and Conditions for Registrants which states about the protection of already registered domain names from auction or reselling the domain name at higher/ unjust prices.
Since there is no restrictions placed on the Registrants, some Registrars are using registrants as proxy and carry out illegal and unfair trade practices pertaining to sale/ purchase of delegated/registered .IN/ ,BHARAT domain names which affect the market environment.

Accordingly, to curb the same, NIXI proposed that the word “Registrar” may be replace with “Registrar/ Registrant” to include both in the .IN Registrant Terms and Condition Policy and RAA.
NIXI invite feedback from the public on the above proposed draft amendment. The submissions will not be disclosed and held in fiduciary capacity, to enable persons submitting feedback to provide the same freely. No public disclosure of the submissions will be made.
The feedback on the draft amendments with proper clarification/ justification may be submitted at [email protected] by 17th July 2023 by 16:00 Hrs.
After this feedback, in person consultation is also proposed.



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