After patents, India also records surge in Geographical Indications

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New Delhi, Apr 3 (UNI) After generating a record number of 15,262 patents in 2007-08, double from 7,539 patents the previous year, India has also recorded a surge in registration of geographical indications (GIs).

As many as 31 GIs were registered in the fiscal which ended on March 31. This, the department of industrial policy and promotion (DIPP), today said was one more than the total number of GIs registered since the registration process began in the country in September 2003.

A geographical indication is a name or sign used on certain products or which corresponds to a specific geographical location or origin which may be a town, region, or country. The use of a GI may act as a certification that the product possesses certain qualities, or enjoys a certain reputation, due to its geographical origin.

Muga Silk from Assam, Madhubani Paintings from Bihar, Aleppy Coir, Navara and Palakkadan Mutta Rice varieties, Malabar Pepper and Aleppy Green Cardamom from Kerala, Salem and Arani Silks and Kovai Cora Cotton from Tamil Nadu, Allahabad Surkha from Uttar Pradesh, Nakshi Kantha from West Bengal, Silver Filigree from Andhra Pradesh, and Ilkal Sarees and Monsooned Malabar Coffees from Karnataka and Kerala are among GIs which were registered in the year gone by, DIPP said in a release, adding a total of 61 GIs products had been registered till end of 2007-08.

Earlier registered GIs include Darjeeling Tea from West Bengal, Chanderi Fabric from Madhya Pradesh, Solapur Chaddar from Maharashtra, Kotpad Handlooms from Orissa, Kota Doria from Rajasthan, Mysore Silk from Karnataka, Kullu Shawl and Kangra Tea from Himachal Pradesh and Pochampalli Ikat from Andhra Pradesh.

The Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999 was brought into force on 15 September 2003.

This is a sui generic legislation intended to give better protection to GIs of India. The registration is done by the Geographical Indications Registry at Chennai.

Of the 37 applications received by the Registry in the last fiscal, GI requests in respect of Bagh Prints of Dhar from Madhya Pradesh, Banaras Brocades and Sarees and Lucknow Chikan Craft from Uttar Pradesh, Kutch Embroidery from Gujarat, Naga Mircha from Nagaland, Fazli Mango from West Bengal, Pipli Applique Work from Orissa, Goan Cashew Feni from Goa, Assam Tea from Assam, and Nilgiri Tea from Tamil Nadu are under process, the release added.

The Commerce and Industry Ministry has urged all state governments to promote registration of GIs of their states.

UNI SAA BJR PM1750

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