Intellectual property Rights with question answers.doc
Skill Enhancement Course-Intellectual Property Rights
2 marks question
Copyright refers to the legal right of the owner of intellectual property. It can be book
articles etc. No one can use without the prior permission of the author.
2.Expand IPR, TRIPS, WTO, WIPO
Intellectual property rights
Trade related Aspects intellectual property, World trade organisation world intellectual
A government authority or licence conferring a right or title for a set period, especially
the sole right to exclude others from making, using, or selling an invention.”
4.Name any two examples of IPR
Patents and trademarks. Geographical indicator industrial design copyright
5.Give any two importance of IPR
Provides incentive to the individual for new creations.
Providing due recognition to the creators and inventors.
7.What is TRADEMARKS?
It is a sign, symbol or word used to distinguish products or services of an organization
from those of others.
8. What is unfair competition?
Any act of competition contrary to honest practices in industrial and commercial
matters” - Paris Convention.
Why should you go for IPR?
The reasoning for intellectual property is to encourage innovation without the fear that a
competitor will steal the idea and / or take the credit for it.
What you mean by IPR
Intellectual property rights are the rights given to persons over the creations of their
minds. They usually give the creator an exclusive right over the use of his/her creation
for a certain period of time.
1.Write a note on PATENTS.
Patents are one of the most important types of IPR. It is defined as “A government
authority or licence conferring a right or title for a set period, especially the sole right to
exclude others from making, using, or selling an invention.” When individuals or
organisations invent or come up with a new way of doing something, they approach the
patent office, give them details about the product or process, and get protection for
their `property’ for a fee. Patents act as an incentive for inventing new products and
processes and form an integral part of a culture of innovation and growth. Patent
protection is given only for a limited period, 20 years.
2.Write a note on GEOGRAPHICAL INDICATIONS
Geographical indications are a type of intellectual property in which goods are defined
as that aspect of industrial property which refer to a country or to a place situated therein
as being the country or place of origin of that product. Geographical Indication (GI) is
primarily an agricultural, natural or a manufactured product (handicrafts and industrial
goods) originating from a definite geographical territory. A product is considered to be
manufactured in a territory if one of the activities of either the production or of
processing or preparation of the goods takes place there. GI conveys an assurance of
quality and distinctiveness which is essentially attributable to the fact of its origin in that
defined geographical locality.
3.Write a note on TRADEMARKS
A trademark is a visual symbol which may be a word signature, name, device, label,
numerals or combination of colours used by one undertaking on goods or services or
other articles of commerce to distinguish it from other similar goods or services
originating from a different undertaking.
Marketing of a particular good or service by the producer is much better off as by
trademark because recognition becomes easier and quality is assured. trademark law is
relevant in virtually all industries and is an area that represents tremendous growth and
importance in today’s economic. These marks are protected by federal laws that
require registration with the federal and/or state government, giving the owner
exclusive rights to use it on the product it was intended to identify and often on related
products. Because companies invest tremendous resources to the development of
trademarks, companies are prepared to invest the necessary resources towards the
protection of these rights from infringers, whether these rights are owned or licensed
to others. Trademark law helps owners properly obtain, protect, and utilize an
intellectual property portfolio for their business success
4.Write a note on BIOLOGICAL INVENTIONS
Biotechnological inventions are defined as “inventions which concern a product
consisting of or containing biological material or a process by means of which biological
material is produced, processed or used. “Biotechnological inventions should also be
patentable if they concern: (a)biological material which is isolated from its natural
environment or produced by means of a technical process even if it is previously
occurred in nature; (b)plants or animals if the technical feasibility of the invention is not
confined to a particular plant or animal variety; (c) a microbiological or other technical
process or a product obtained by means of such a process other than a plant or animal
5.Write the importance of IPR in present scenario.
It encourages creation of new, path breaking inventions, such as cancer cure medicines It
incentivises inventors, authors, creators, etc., for their work It allows the work created
by a person to be distributed and communicated to the public. It can be commercialised
by licensing by the owner. Therefore, it helps in the prevention of loss of income
6.Write notes on relationship between unfair competition and Intellectual property
Intellectual property (IP) concerns the right to exclusivity over the commercial
exploitation of fruits of the creative mind, and of certain signs used in trade. Unfair
competition, in principle, destroys the trust in the development of markets and products.
create or are capable of creating confusion as to the enterprise, the goods or the
industrial or commercial activity of a competitor; Formulate false allegations in the
course of trade so as to discredit the enterprise, the goods or the industrial or commercial
activity of a competitor; Indications or allegations that in the course of trade are capable
of misleading the public as to the nature, manufacturing process, characteristics,
suitability for their purpose, or quantity of goods.
7.What is infringement of intellectual property?
IP infringement is any breach of intellectual property rights. IP rights are infringed
when a work protected by IP laws is used, copied or otherwise exploited without having
the proper permission from a person who owns those rights. Examples of an IP
infringement are “counterfeiting” and “piracy."
8.Write a note on INDUSTRIAL DESIGNS
An industrial design consists of the creation of a shape, configuration or composition of
pattern or colour, or combination of pattern and colour in three-dimensional form
containing aesthetic value. An industrial design can be a two- or three-dimensional
pattern used to produce a product, industrial commodity or handicraft. Industrial designs
are applied to a wide variety of products of industry and handicraft items: from packages
and containers to furnishing and household goods, from lighting equipment to jewellery,
and from electronic devices to textiles. Industrial designs may also be relevant to graphic
symbols, graphical user interfaces (GUI), and logos. Industrial design needs to be
registered in order to be protected under industrial design law as a “registered design”.
In some countries, industrial designs are protected under patent law as “design patents.
9.why is IPR important?
It encourages creation of new, path breaking inventions, such as cancer cure medicines It
incentivises inventors, authors, creators, etc., for their work It allows the work created
by a person to be distributed and communicated to the public. It can be commercialised
by licensing by the owner. Therefore, it helps in the prevention of loss of income It helps
authors, creators, developers and owners to get recognition for their works.
10 MARKS QUESTION
Intellectual Property Rights and Biotechnology: An Overview
Intellectual property refers to creations of the mind: inventions, literary and artistic
works, and symbols, names, images, and designs used in commerce. Biotechnology
generally concerns the application of cellular and molecular biology to make or modify
products or processes. The application of patent law to biotechnological inventions has
to deal with a number of particularities that may not exist in the same way in other areas
Biotechnological Invention rights arises we cannot patent -a method of medical
treatment or diagnosis, an idea, abstract or a scientific theory., Genes, microorganisms,
Typical issues relating to biotechnological inventions result from the fact that biological
material is capable of reproducing itself. The development of genetic engineering
resulted in the possibility of overlap between plant variety and patent protection even in
countries where patent protection for plant varieties is excluded. While each of these
systems provides a scope of protection and rights as well as limitations that are distinct
from each other, the interplay between the two systems is under scrutiny.
Plants can also be protected using a regular (utility) patent in countries that permit
patenting of plant or higher life forms (HLFs). This is a more common method for
protecting whole novel plants, plant genes, methods for creating novel plants and novel
applications for an existing plant.
Although patents have been granted on nucleotide sequences for >30 years, there has
been much recent controversy surrounding the patenting of genes. Genome sequencing
initiatives along with improved techniques for identifying and sequencing genes, has
resulted in an significant increase in the number of gene patents in the last decade.
Patenting of Life Forms and GMO:
Life forms such as microorganisms, plants and animals, are not patentable in India under
the provisions Indian patent Act (1970). In America, Europe and other developed
countries, microorganisms obtained by novel techniques like genetic engineering are
The first patent of GMO (Genetically Modified Organisms) was allowed by US
Supreme Court in 1980 as described in utility patent. A maize plant over producing
tryptophan amino acid was patented in USA in 1985. This was beginning of patenting of
high organisms for patenting. For animals, a patent was granted in 1988 for
‘oncomouse’, genetically modified mouse in USA.
Trade Secrets: Trade secrets often include private proprietary information that allows a
definite advantage to the owner. Trade secrets in the area of biotechnology may include
(i) Hybridization conditions
(ii) Cell lines
(iii) Corporate merchandising plan or
(iv) Customer lists
2. Explain Commercializing biotechnology invention
Biotechnology, broadly defined, includes any technique that uses living organisms (or
parts of organisms) to make or modify products, to improve plants or animals, or to
develop microorganisms for specific uses. Biological processes and organisms have
been used with great success throughout history and have become increasingly
sophisticated over the years. Since the dawn of civilization, people have deliberately
selected organisms that improved agriculture, animal husbandry, baking, and brewing.
More recently, a better understanding of genetics has led to more effective applications
of traditional genetics in such areas as antibiotic and chemical production.
Biotechnology could potentially affect any current industrial biological process or any
process in which a biological catalyst could replace a chemical one. Industrial
applications of biotechnology will be found in several industrial sectors, including
pharmaceuticals, animal and plant agriculture, specialty chemicals and food additives,
environmental areas, commodity chemicals and energy production, and bioelectronics.
The industrial sector in which the earliest applications of new biotechnology have
occurred is the pharmaceutical sector.
Recombinant DNA and MAb technologies were developed with public funds directed
toward biomedical research. The first biotechnology products, such as rDNA-produced
human insulin, interferon, and MAb diagnostic kits, are a direct result of the biomedical
nature of the basic research that led to these new technologies. Pharmaceutical
companies have had years of experience with biological production methods, and this
experience has enabled them to take advantage of the new technologies. Pharmaceutical
products are high value- -added and can be priced to recover costs incurred during R&D,
so the pharmaceutical sector is a good place to begin the costly process of developing a
new technology. Because of the rapid diffusion of the new genetic techniques into
pharmaceutical R&D programs, the pharmaceutical sector is currently most active in
commercializing biotechnology. For this reason, it serves as a model for the industrial
development of biotechnology in much of this report. It is important to recognize,
however, that the development of biotechnology in other industrial sectors will differ
from its development in the pharmaceutical sector. Regulatory and trade barriers and a
marketing and distribution system unique to the pharmaceutical sector limit its
usefulness as a model. Furthermore, the techniques may not diffuse as rapidly into other
industrial sectors, such as the chemical industry, because of difficulties companies may
have in recovering investments in R&D and physical plants required to convert to
biological methods of production.
Environmental applications of biotechnology include mineral leaching and metal
concentration, pollution control and toxic waste degradation, and enhanced oil recovery.
These applications may take longer to reach the market, because little is known of the
genetics of the most potentially useful micro-organisms. Additionally, regulation is
expected to be a major factor influencing development of this area because these
applications use microorganisms that are deliberately released into the environment. The
nature and extent of this regulation remains uncertain, and this uncertainty may deter
some firms from entering the field, thus slowing development.
Discuss the emerging issues in IPR
There are many challenges and issues that India needs to address to maximize the
profits of the companies. The issues are as follows:
Patent Evergreening Prevention: One of the most important intellectual
property rights issues challenges is the prevention of the evergreening of the
patents for multinational companies. As we know, the companies cannot
evergreen their patents simply by making minor changes. So, section 3(d) in
the Indian Patent Act (IPA) possess as one of the biggest issues with regards to
IPR. This act bars the grant of patents to new forms of substances.
Subsidies & IPR Issues: The government provides subsidies to people especially
farmers to reduce their burden. A major form of subsidies includes food subsidy,
fertilizer subsidy, education subsidy, etc. However, for the complete
implementation of TRIPS agreements, one needs to reduce or eliminate these
subsidies. Thus, the Indian government needs to create a balance between
providing subsidies and providing IP rights in India.
The Product Patents Process: A product patent protects a product. It offers high
protection to the original inventor to reduce the competition for the same product.
Whereas, a process patent protects the process through which one manufactures
the product and not the product. It reduces the element of monopoly in the market.
As India is a part of the TRIPS agreement, the agreement requires all its members
to shift their patent regime from process to product patent. This remains a
challenge for India, as process patent would be more helpful to a country like
India. This is due to the fact that India is a developing country and ordinary
people are struggling with basic necessities like food. Protecting traditional
knowledge: Traditional knowledge, especially in the field of medicine, is like a
gold mine. The Indian government is bound to protect he traditional knowledge
by not allowing MNC’s to get patents on the traditional culture. Above all, the
government has created a Traditional Knowledge Digital Library (TKDL) to
prevent the patenting of traditional knowledge. So, this is one of the intellectual
property rights issues in India.
Compulsory Licensing & Drug Price Control Order: One of the most
important intellectual property rights issues that the government needs to address
is the use of compulsory licensing. It’s a relaxation available to the developing
countries under the TRIPS agreement, something which organizations misuse
sometimes. Moreover, under section 84 of the IPA, a company can acquire a
compulsory license for “private commercial use” under certain circumstances.
With the Drug Price Control Order, the company needs to justify the price of the
drug with regards to investments. If someone plays foul, then the government has
the right to intervene. Multinationals are asking the government to revoke this
provision. However, the government is not ceding the demands to protect the
interest of the masses.
Explain positive and negative impact of IPR
2. Intellectual Property (IP) rights offer a competitive advantage to companies
by preventing unauthorised exploitation by third parties. This is especially
beneficial for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) as they can use these
powerful tools to compete with larger companies.
3. Indirect Revenue Generation
4. When a company secures its products or processes with IP rights, it can
generate revenue not only from direct exploitation but also from licensing
contracts with third parties. Sometimes, these additional indirect revenues surpass
the profits earned from direct exploitation.
5. Technical Information Dissemination
6. Even if a company or university doesn't intend to protect its own inventions,
its researchers can still benefit from patent information. Patents contain detailed
technical information that is often not available elsewhere. In fact, it's estimated
that up to 80% of current technical knowledge can only be found in patent
7. Collateral for Financing
8. As intangible assets, IP rights can play a crucial role for SMEs seeking
financing. Start-ups, spin-offs, and other SMEs can leverage IP rights to persuade
third parties to provide funding, such as equity investment or loan grants.
9. In conclusion, IP rights offer many benefits to SMEs, from protecting their
inventions to generating revenue and attracting financing. These benefits make it
essential for SMEs to take advantage of IP protection in their commercial
Write notes on enforcement of IPR
11. The Indian government, in compliance with the TRIPS Agreement, has
introduced the Intellectual Property Rights (Imported Goods) Enforcement Rules,
2007. These rules empower Customs Officers to enforce IPR over imported
products, which includes patents, designs, geographical indications, trademarks,
12. When an application in the prescribed format is received, Custom
Authorities may register the complaint and enforce border control measures to
protect IPR. However, it is important to note that this right is not unlimited. A
procedure has been laid down for the release of the seized goods upon an
application by the importer of the goods.
13. The Indian Customs Act, 1962, empowers the government to prohibit
importation and exportation of goods of specified description if it deems
necessary to do so, including for "the protection of patents, trademarks and
copyrights". Goods imported in contravention of the provisions of the Customs
Act or any other laws are liable to be confiscated. Customs officers are
empowered to inspect any premises, conveyance, and x-ray any person suspected
of smuggling contraband goods. They may also investigate or interrogate any
person and make an arrest.
14. In summary, the Indian government takes IPR seriously and has
implemented measures to protect them. It's essential for businesses and
individuals to comply with these regulations to avoid confiscation of goods and
potential legal repercussions.
Explain genesis and development of IPR
PARIS CONVENTION FOR THE PROTECTION OF INDUSTRIAL PROPERTY: The
Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property, signed in Paris, France, on
March 20, 1883, was one of the first intellectual property treaties. It established a Union
for the protection of industrial property. The Convention is still in force. After a
diplomatic conference in Paris in 1880, the Convention was signed in 1883 by 11
countries: Belgium, Brazil, France, Guatemala, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, El
Salvador, Serbia, Spain and Switzerland. As of December 2011, the Convention has 174
contracting member countries, which makes it one of the most widely adopted treaties
worldwide. Notably, Taiwan and Kuwait are not parties to the Convention. The Paris
Convention is administered by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO),
based in Geneva, Switzerland. The Convention applies to industrial property in the
widest sense, including patents, marks, industrial designs, utility models (a kind of
“small patent” provided for by the laws of some countries), trade names (designations
under which an industrial or commercial activity is carried on), geographical indications
(indications of source and appellations of origin) and the repression of unfair
competition. India’s membership into the convention came into force on December 7,
BERNE CONVENTION FOR THE PROTECTION OF LITERARY AND ARTISTIC
WORKS 117 The Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works,
usually known as the Berne Convention, is an international agreement governing
copyright, which was first accepted in Bern, Switzerland in 1886. The Convention rests
on three basic principles and contains a series of provisions determining the minimum
protection to be granted, as well as special provisions available to developing countries
which want to make use of them. The three basic principles are the following: (a) Works
originating in one of the contracting States (that is, works the author of which is a
national of such a State or works which were first published in such a State) must be
given the same protection in each of the other contracting States as the latter grants to
the works of its own nationals (principle of “national treatment”). (b) Such protection
must not be conditional upon compliance with any formality (principle of “automatic”
protection). (c) Such protection is independent of the existence of protection in the
country of origin of the work (principle of the “independence” of protection). If,
however, a contracting State provides for a longer term than the minimum prescribed by
the Convention and the work ceases to be protected in the country of origin, protection
may be denied once protection in the country of origin ceases. As of March 2012, there
are 165 countries that are parties to the Berne Convention. India’s membership into the
convention came into force on April 1, 1928.
THE PATENT COOPERATION TREATY (PCT) The Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT)
is an international treaty administered by the World Intellectual Property Organization
(WIPO). The treaty was done at Washington on June 19, 1970. The PCT makes it
possible to seek patent protection for an invention simultaneously in a large number of
countries by filing a single "international application” with a single patent office 118
(i.e. receiving Office). The PCT system simplifies the process of multi-national patent
filings by reducing the requirement to file multiple patent applications for multi-national
patent rights. The PCT international applications do not result in the issuance of
“international patents” and the International Bureau (IB) does not grant patents. The
decision on whether to confer patent rights remains in the hands of the national and/or
regional patent offices, and the patent rights are limited to the jurisdiction of the patent
granting authority. The PCT procedure consists of an international phase and a
national/regional phase. The PCT international application process starts with the
international phase and concludes with the national/regional phase.
Write applications of IPR
Patent Protection and Revenue Generation:
Patent protection is crucial for safeguarding new inventions and processes. It
provides a competitive edge in the market by securing ownership of the
intellectual property. For instance, if you develop a new drug, patent protection
prevents others from stealing your idea, and any use of it requires authorization.
Furthermore, licensing your patent for use by others can generate a significant
source of revenue for your organization through royalties or other forms of
compensation. This additional income can be utilized to fund research and
development, thereby maintaining a healthy investment cycle.
Reward: IPR also helps to recognize and reward individuals or organizations for
their hard work and innovation. By protecting innovators from intellectual
property theft, IPR provides a platform for showcasing their skills and inventions.
Protection with no restrictions: However, it's important to note that intellectual
property protection shouldn't come with unnecessary restrictions. In cases where
patent protection isn't applicable, alternative IPRs can be used to safeguard
inventions or processes. For example, in India, plants cannot be patented, but
Plant Breeder's Rights can be utilized to protect plant varieties. Similarly,
softwares are not patentable in India, and Copyright provides protection for
bioinformatics and drug designing software. Overall, IPR is a crucial tool for
protecting and rewarding innovation and should be used wisely to promote
creativity and growth in various industries.
1. Importance of IPR
India has always been an innovative society, but there is a lack of awareness
regarding the importance of intellectual property rights (IPRs). IPRs stimulate
creativity and innovation, and they are marketable financial assets and an
economic tool. Additionally, IPRs promote advancement in science and
technology, arts, biodiversity, etc. and provide a competitive advantage in
commercial activities by preventing unauthorized exploitation by third parties. IP
protection also provides a guarantee with respect to the safety and quality of
goods and enables technology transfer through licensing and assignment.
Furthermore, IP is an intangible asset that helps small and medium-sized
enterprises (SMEs) obtain financing through loans and investments.
To address these issues, India has outlined a strategy to strengthen and expand
human resources, institutions, and capacities for teaching, training, research, and
skill building in IPRs. The goal is to develop a pool of IPR professionals and
experts in policy and law, strategy development, administration, and enforcement.
Additionally, the strategy aims to increase the generation of IP assets in the
country and their utilization for development purposes and to harness the full
potential of IPRs for economic growth with the help of a reservoir of experts.
Another key aspect of the strategy is to strengthen the enforcement and
adjudicatory mechanisms for combating IPR infringements. This includes
building respect for IPR among the general public, sensitizing inventors and
creators of IP on measures for protection and enforcement of their rights, building
the capacity of enforcement agencies at various levels, and identifying and
undertaking measures to check counterfeiting and piracy.
The strategy also emphasizes the importance of commercializing IPRs to realize
the value and economic reward for the owners of IP rights. This includes
encouraging entrepreneurship so that the financial value of IPRs may be captured
and making efforts for the creation of a public platform to connect creators and
innovators to potential users, buyers, and funding institutions.
To support these goals, the strategy calls for modernizing and strengthening
service-oriented IPR administration and ensuring strong and effective IPR laws
that balance the interests of rights owners with the larger public interest. The
strategy also seeks to create public awareness about the economic, social, and
cultural benefits of IPRs among all sections of society and to launch a nationwide
program of promotion for improving awareness about the benefits of IPRs and
their value to the rights-holders and the public.
India is also a member of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO),
which was created in 1967 to encourage creative activity and promote the
protection of intellectual property throughout the world. Most countries in the
world are members of at least one of the 26 international treaties that WIPO is
administering. The PCT (Patent Cooperation Treaty) has been signed by 148
countries worldwide, which allows member countries to file one single patent
application that is considered a valid patent application in all member countries.
This makes it possible to protect up to 100 designs with just one single
Turmeric is a tropical herb grown in east India. Turmeric powder is widely used in India
as a medicine, a food ingredient and a dye to name a few of its In 1995, the United
States awarded patent on turmeric to University of Mississippi medical center for wound
healing property. The claimed subject matter was the use of "turmeric powder and its
administration", both oral as well as topical, for wound healing. An exclusive right has
been granted to sell and distribute. The Indian Council for Scientific and Industrial
Research (CSIR) had objected to the patent granted and provided documented evidences
of the prior art to USPTO. Though it was a well known fact that the use of turmeric was
known in every household since ages in India, it was a exceptional task to find published
information on the use of turmeric powder through oral as well as topical route for
wound healing. Due to extensive researches, 32 references were located in different
languages namely Sanskrit, Urdu and Hindi. Therefore, the USPTO revoked the patent,
stating that the claims made in the patent were obvious and anticipated, and agreeing
that the use of turmeric was an old art of healing wounds. Therefore, the TK that
belonged to India was safeguarded in Turmeric case.
The patent for Neem was first filed by W.R. Grace and the Department of Agriculture,
USA in European Patent Office. The said method of controlling fungi on plants
comprising of contacting the fungi with a Neem oil formulation. A legal opposition has
been filed by India against the grant of the patent. The legal opposition to this patent was
lodged by the New Delhi-based Research Foundation for Science, Technology and
Ecology (RFSTE), in co-operation with the International Federation of Organic
Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) and Magda Aelvoet, former green Member of the
European Parliament (MEP). A tree legendary to India, from its roots to its spreading
crown, the Neem tree contains a number of potent compounds, notably a chemical found
in its seeds named azadirachtin. The opponents' submitted evidence of ancient Indian
ayurvedic texts that have described the hydrophobic extracts of neem seeds were known
and used for centuries in India, both in curing dermatological diseases in humans and in
protecting agricultural plants form fungal infections. The EPO identified the lack of
novelty, inventive step and possibly form a relevant prior art and revoked the patent.
Apart from this, several US patents were recently taken out Neem-based emulsions and
The US patent office granted a patent to 'RiceTec' for a strain of Basmati rice, an
aromatic rice grown in India and Pakistan for centuries. Rice is the staple food of people
in most parts of Asia, especially India and Pakistan. For centuries, the farmers in this
region developed, nurtured and conserved over a hundred thousand distinct varieties of
rice to suit different tastes and needs. In 1997, in its patent application Ricetec also
acknowledged that "good quality Basmati rice traditionally come from northern India
and Pakistan...Indeed in some countries the term can be applied to only the Basmati rice
grown in India and Pakistan." However, the company then went on to claim that it had
invented certain "novel" Basmati lines and grains "which make possible the production
of high quality, higher yielding Basmati rice worldwide." The Indian Government had
pursued to appeal only 3 claims out of 20 claims made in the original patent application
of RiceTec Inc. What were being challenged were only claims regarding certain
characteristics of basmati (specifically starch index, aroma, and grain dimensions). It is
to be noted that WTO Agreement does not require countries to provide Patent protection
to plant varieties. It only requires countries to legislate so that plant varieties are
protected in some manner (not necessarily through patents). However, US being a strong
proponent of Patent protection of plant varieties allowed the patent application. Three
strains development by RiceTec are allowed patent protection and they are eligible to
label its strain as "Superior Basmati Rice". Therefore, in Basmati case, RiceTec altered
the strain through crossing with the Western strain of grain and successfully claimed it
as their invention and the case is an example of problems illustrated in TRIPS with
regards to patenting biotechnological processes.
What is a trademark?
A trademark is a symbol or sign used by an individual, group, or legal entity to
distinguish their goods or services from those of others in the market. It can be a word,
letter, number, label, brand, ticket, or combination of colors, shape, or packaging. The
creative efforts and innovative skills of an entrepreneur go into making a product or
service more effective, useful, and attractive to prospective customers. Hence, it is
natural for the entrepreneur to want their products or services to be identified with them
and distinguished from similar offerings in the market. This is where the trademark
Unlike patents and copyrights, trademarks do not expire after a set period but are
renewable after 10 years. Trademark rights come from actual use in commerce and can
last forever as long as the mark is used to indicate the source of goods and services.
Since trademarks are valuable assets, it is advisable to register them. Registration is
prima facie evidence of proprietorship of the trademark and gives the exclusive right to
use it in respect of relevant goods or services. Registered proprietors can also take legal
action in case of infringement or unauthorized use of the trademark. Trademarks can be
assigned or licensed like any other property and their Goodwill can be enjoyed forever if
they are renewed regularly.
Trademarks are usually registered with national trademark registry offices and are
protected within the territory under the jurisdiction of these offices. In India, trademarks
are registered with the Trade Marks Registry of the office of the Controller General of
Patents, Designs, and Trade Marks under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry,
Government of India. Therefore, the registered trademark can only be enforced within
the territory of India.
What is copyright
Copyright is a form of legal protection that safeguards original works of authorship,
including literary, dramatic, musical, and artistic works such as poetry, novels, movies,
songs, computer software, and architecture. It deals with the protection and
exploitation of the expression of ideas in a tangible form. Copyright law has evolved
over many centuries, adapting to changing ideas about creativity and new means of
communication and media.
In the modern world, copyright law not only provides a legal framework for the
protection of individual writers, composers, or artists, but also supports the cultural
industries such as film, broadcasting, recording, and computer software industries.
Copyright protects literary, dramatic, musical, and artistic works, including "original"
cinematic films and sound recordings fixed in a tangible medium. To be eligible for
copyright protection, the idea must be expressed in an original form.
Copyright law acknowledges both the economic and moral rights of the owner. The
owner has the right to control and benefit from the use of their work, but the principle
of fair use allows others to use copyrighted material without the owner's permission
under certain circumstances. The duration of copyright protection depends on several
factors. For works created by an individual, protection lasts for the life of the author
plus 70 years. For works created anonymously, pseudonymously, or for hire,
protection lasts for 95 years from the date of publication or 120 years from the date of
creation, whichever is shorter.
What is patent
A patent is a limited duration property right granted for an invention, which can include
machines, manufactured articles, industrial processes, and chemical compositions. The
duration of patent protection depends on the type of patent granted, including design
patents, utility patents, and plant patents.
There are two types of patents: product patents and process patents. A product patent is
granted to the original inventor of the product and provides a "True Monopoly" right,
meaning no one else can manufacture the same product using the same process or any
other process. Product patents are considered a higher level of protection compared to
process patents. In contrast, a process patent is granted only to a particular process and
not to the end product that is a result of such a process. This means any other
manufacturer or inventor can create the same product using a different process, giving a
lower level of protection to the inventor. Additionally, there can be multiple process
patents for a single product.
In the field of biotechnology, there are particularities when it comes to patent law. For
example, the patentability of biological materials that are isolated or derived from
naturally occurring living organisms has triggered widespread discussions. Some argue
that such materials are mere "discoveries" and therefore not patentable, while others
argue that they are man-made "inventions." Another issue is the determination of the
scope of legal protection for future generations of biological material that is capable of
In addition to these specific issues, the application of patentability criteria has
implications on licensing and other issues related to the exploitation of patents.
Exceptions and limitations to patent rights, such as research and experimental use
exceptions, are important for downstream innovation. Other relevant issues, such as the
conservation of biodiversity and ethical dimensions of the protection and
commercialization of biotechnological inventions, have been discussed in various
forums, including the World Trade Organization (WTO), the Convention on Biological
Diversity (CBD), and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
This specific characteristic requires determination of law as to, for example: (i)
the scope of legal protection of future generations; (ii) exhaustion regimes; (iii)
special rules, if any, for plant and animal breeders or farmers.
Write note on Plant variety
A new variety of plant breeder is protected by the State. To be eligible for plant diversity
protection, diversity must be novel, distinct and similar to existing varieties and its
essential characteristics under the Plant Protection and Protection Act, 2001 should be
uniform and stable. A plant breeder is given a license or special right to do the following
in relation to different types of promotional material:
1. Produce and reproduce the material
2. Condition the material for the purpose of propagation
3. Offer material for sale
4. Sell the materials
5. Export the materials
6. Import the materials
7. The stock of goods for the above purposes
Typically, countries are protecting new plant varieties through the Sui Genis system. The
general purpose of conservation is to encourage those who intend to manufacture,
finance, or exploit such products to serve their purpose, particularly where they
otherwise do not work at all.
The enactment of the Protection of Plant Varieties and ‘Farmers’ Rights Act 2001 is an
outcome of the India’sobligation which arose from article 27(3)(b) of the TRIPs
Agreement of 2001 which obliges members to protect plant varieties either by patents or
by effective sui generic system or by any combination thereof India declined to protect
plant varieties by a sui generis law, i.e. the Plant Varieties Act.
Write note on
Industrial Design and geographical indicator
In India, industrial designs are registered and protected under the Designs Act, 2000 and
corresponding Designs Rules, 2001. The earlier Act of 1911 was repealed when the new
legislation came into force on 11th May 2001. The Design Rules, 2001 have been
amended twice, in 2008 and 2014, with the latest amendment introducing a new
category of applicant as small entity.
Industrial design refers to the creation of new and original features of shape,
configuration, surface pattern, ornamentation, and composition of lines or colors applied
to articles that appeal to the eye.
To ensure quality management in design registration activities, the office of the
CGPDTM has acquired ISO 9001:2008 certification for the Design application
registration process. The certification was awarded by the British Standard Institution on
13/04/2015 and is valid up to March, 2018, subject to yearly Continuous Assessment
Visit audits. The certification covers the protection and maintenance of industrial design
through registration of articles of manufacture and any substance under the provisions of
Designs Act, 2000.
Geographical indications of goods refer to the use of a geographical name to indicate
that a product originates from a specific country, region, or locality, conveying an
assurance of quality and distinctiveness. Geographical indications are covered under
Articles 1 (2) and 10 of the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property
and Articles 22 to 24 of the Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights
India, being a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO), enacted the
Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration & Protection) Act, 1999, which came
into effect on 15th September 2003, to register and protect geographical indications of
IP and Competition Policy
Intellectual property (IP) allows consumers to make choices between competing
entrepreneurs, and the goods and services they sell. Therefore, IP is inherently pro-
competitive as it ensures the protection of differentiated, intangible business assets.
Without IP, less efficient manufacturers and service providers would try to lure clients
by copying the goods and services of more efficient competitors. The latter would lose
any incentive to improve or to offer new products and services. Society as a whole
would lose. But IP only performs that crucial role of ensuring competition when it
protects genuine differences.
What Is Unfair Competition Discuss Unfair competition and IPR
Unfair competition addresses circumstances where consumers have been misled, or
deceptive trade practices, as well as practices designed to restrict or alter a company's
revenue. In all cases, the activity can legally give rise to a tort action. That is, the
wrongful act is such that the perpetrator can and should be held civilly liable in a court
of law. Some forms of unfair competition are crimes, as well.
or oppression—the competition is such that the victim is thwarted or prevented from
successfully engaging in trade.
They're perceived as being against public policy because of their tendency to unduly
hinder competition, and this affects the greater good of the public. Unfair competition
laws have been established to protect consumers and businesses and to help prevent
For the most part, issues of unfair competition are addressed in state courts. A successful
suit brought in state court might result in an order of monetary damages, an injunction
against the guilty party continuing with such actions or both.
Unfair competition law does not simply protect businesses nor is it solely the domain of
large corporations. Small business owners and individual consumers can be hurt as well,
as in bait-and-switch cases and instances involving unauthorized substitution. The
Federal Trade Commission has become involved in cases where consumers were
harmed or lost money, such as in cases of false advertising.
Types of Unfair Competition
Think of unfair competition as a large umbrella that covers a variety of actions. Some of
This involves one business using another's trademarked property without permission. An
example of trademark infringement would be using the Coca-Cola trademark on a soda
container manufactured by a competing beverage maker.
False advertising involves making claims that are misleading or untrue, such as a
company making false claims about a drug's abilities to promote weight loss when such
claims had never been proven.
Unauthorized substitution is when a seller replaces one brand of goods with another
without authorization. This could involve substituting a low-cost handbag for a designer
handbag. It could also mean false advertising or false representation of products or
services, such as exaggerating a software program’s spell-check capabilities. In either
case, consumers are not getting what they thought they were paying for.
Bait-and-switch tactics are another example of an unfair competition practice that
directly affects consumers. Say that a product in high demand is advertised at a very
reasonable price. Shoppers flock into the store to purchase the item only to be told that
it's now sold out. But the shopper can purchase a similar model for just a few dollars
more—and unsuspecting consumers will often do so.
Bait and switch is a crime in some states, particularly when the advertised item was
never in stock in the first place.
Misappropriation of Trade Secrets
Misappropriation of trade secrets is another common instance of unfair competition,
such as stealing a competitor’s proprietary formula. Consider an employee who is
entrusted with or stumbles upon the exact recipe for KFC's chicken batter. They then
rent a fast food restaurant establishment and begin selling chicken on their own using
that same recipe.
Some of these examples, such as making false claims about a drug's abilities, technically
fall under the umbrella of unfair trade practices, which is a component of unfair
Below-cost selling occurs when a company intentionally and willingly sells a product or
service to consumers for less than the market rate. A retail seller might actually charge
consumers less than what it paid for an item, taking a loss. Another company might sell
one or more of its services at a rate that virtually ensures it cannot make money.
This type of situation is often temporary and is done with the intention of snagging
business away from competitors who can't or who are unwilling to compete. The reward
comes down the road when the company selling below cost increases its market share.
Dumping is a similar concept. It involves selling products abroad for far less than what
they would fetch in a local market. Why? Importing governments often offer several
enticements including subsidies and cash incentives.
Rumor mongering is exactly what it sounds like—maligning a competitor through
written or oral communications, often placed strategically with the press and other
Unfair competition is a term that applies to dishonest or fraudulent rivalry in trade
It also refers to a branch of intellectual property law.
Businesses performing acts of unfair competition can be held liable in court.
Types of unfair competition include trademark infringement, false advertising,
unauthorized substitution, bait-and-switch tactics, misappropriation of trade
secrets, below-cost selling, dumping, and rumor mongering.
What is Competition Policy and Law?
Competition Policy and Law refer to government measures that aim to regulate the
behavior of businesses and the structure of industries to promote efficiency and
maximize welfare. There are two main components to competition policy: policies that
promote competition in local and national markets, and legislation, judicial decisions,
and regulations that prevent anti-competitive business practices and unnecessary
government interventions. The latter is known as competition/antitrust law. Effective
competition law helps create an enabling business environment that improves efficiency
and leads to efficient resource allocation by preventing the abuse of market power and
stimulating competition. It also prevents artificial entry barriers, facilitates market
access, and complements other competition-promoting activities.
Enforcement of intellectual property rights
If the intellectual property system is to make its intended beneficial contribution to
economic and social welfare, it is vital that the tools be available to ensure that IP rights
are respected in an effective, timely and accessible manner, alongside the legitimate
interests of others concerned. The Agreement on Trade-related Aspects of Intellectual
Property Rights (TRIPS) broke new ground in multilateral law by setting out general
principles for the enforcement of IP rights. It requires WTO members to make available
effective, balanced and fair procedures that provide for necessary remedies while
guarding against their misuse and the creation of obstacles to legitimate trade.
The general obligations are a set of principles for fairness, transparency, due process and
balance that apply to all civil and administrative enforcement procedures for IP rights
covered by the TRIPS Agreement. The objective is for members' laws to permit the right
holder to take effective action against any infringement of IP rights. In doing so, the
basic principles, namely the application of fair and equitable procedures, the making
available of the decisions on the merits of a case to the parties to ensure transparency,
and the opportunity for review by a judicial authority of final decisions.
Enforcement procedures must be applied in a manner so as to avoid the creation of
barriers to legitimate trade. Members are also required to provide comprehensive
safeguards against the abuse of the procedures, such as the compensation for harm or
loss of the defendant or holder of the goods or the provision of a security or equivalent
assurance by the right holder when provisional measures or border measures are applied.
Civil and administrative procedures and remedies
The TRIPS Agreement provides that a right holder must be able to initiate fair and
equitable civil judicial procedures against an infringer of IP rights covered under the
Agreement. Judicial authorities must be able to award three types of remedies:
injunctions to order a party to stop its infringing action, damages to compensate for the
injury caused by the infringement, as well as other remedies, such as the removal of
infringing goods from channels of commerce or their destruction, subject to certain
Some national legal systems must deal with certain IP enforcement cases through
administrative procedures, rather than court proceedings. If so, the TRIPS Agreement
requires the same principles to be applicable to them to the extent that civil remedies can
be ordered as a result of administrative procedures on the merits of a case.
WTO members are required to provide prompt and effective provisional enforcement in
two situations: to prevent an infringement of IP rights from occurring, in particular to
prevent goods from entering the distribution channels, including infringing goods on
importation immediately after customs clearance; and to preserve relevant evidence
concerning an alleged infringement. Provisional measures have to be available without
prior hearing of the alleged infringer, where appropriate – for instance, where a delay
would likely cause irreparable harm, or evidence may be destroyed.
The requirements in the TRIPS Agreement on border measures enable holders of IP
rights to obtain the cooperation of customs administrations to intercept infringing goods
at the border and to prevent the release of these goods into circulation. The requirements
are mandatory only where imports of fake trademark or pirated copyright goods are
concerned. Some WTO members apply border measures to goods that infringe other IP
rights and to infringing goods destined for export, but this is only optional under TRIPS.
Similarly, WTO members are not required to apply border measures to parallel imports
(non-infringing products but on the market in another country with the IP owner's
permission), to goods in transit, or to the importing of small quantities of goods of a
non-commercial nature. As a general rule, the right holder must request the customs
authorities to take action; there is no obligation on customs authorities to act on their
own initiative (ex officio), although members may provide for this.
The TRIPS Agreement contains basic objectives and principles that apply to the
enforcement of intellectual property (IP) rights. The Agreement requires WTO members
to provide non-discriminatory treatment to nationals of all WTO members, without
favoring their own nationals. Members may exceed the minimum standards required by
TRIPS, as long as they remain consistent with the Agreement and ensure non-
discriminatory treatment. Members can also determine their own methods for
implementing the Agreement's enforcement obligations within their legal systems.
The TRIPS Agreement sets out general obligations that apply to all civil and
administrative enforcement procedures for IP rights. The goal is to enable right holders
to take effective action against any infringement of their IP rights. This involves the
application of fair and equitable procedures, transparency in decision-making, and
opportunities for judicial review. Enforcement procedures should not create barriers to
legitimate trade, and members must provide safeguards against the abuse of procedures,
including compensation for harm or loss and the provision of security by right holders.
The TRIPS Agreement enables right holders to initiate civil judicial procedures against
infringers of IP rights. Judicial authorities may award three types of remedies:
injunctions to stop infringing actions, damages to compensate for injury caused by
infringement, and other remedies, such as the removal or destruction of infringing
goods. In some national legal systems, administrative procedures may handle certain IP
enforcement cases instead of court proceedings. If so, the TRIPS Agreement requires
that the same principles apply to administrative procedures as to civil remedies.
The TRIPS Agreement requires WTO members to provide prompt and effective
provisional enforcement to prevent infringement of IP rights and preserve relevant
evidence. Border measures allow right holders to obtain customs administrations'
cooperation to intercept infringing goods at the border and prevent their release into
circulation. Criminal procedures and penalties are mandatory only in cases of wilful
trademark counterfeiting or copyright piracy carried out on a commercial scale.
"Fair Use" refers to the amount of copying or usage of copyrighted material that is
permitted without the right holder's permission, as long as it does not obstruct the
progress of human knowledge. Limited portions of a work can be copied without
permission for non-commercial and academic use, but the exact permissible percentage
may be determined by the courts. Fair use allows the use of a small part of a work that
does not harm its present or potential market, but the law has many grey areas that must
be decided on a case-by-case basis.
"Inventions" include computer software, instructional materials, machines, compositions
of matter, genetic forms, production processes, and plant varieties. Inventions developed
within an individual's subject area of principal competence in scholarly activities for
which the individual is employed will be considered developed in the course of
employment. The "Originator" of an invention is anyone involved, directly or indirectly,
in the invention as defined in the document, including faculty, staff, students, and
fellows of the institute.