Intellectual property in India refers to the patents, copyrights and other intangible goods in India. Indian government approved its first Intellectual Property Rights Policy in May 2016.
The “Copyright Act, 1957” (as modified by the Copyright Amendment Act 2012) governs the subject of copyright law in India. The history of copyright law in India can be looked back to its colonial era under the British Empire. The Copyright Act, 1957 was the first post-independence copyright legislation in the country and the law has been amended six times since 1957. The most recent modification was in the year 2012, through the Copyright (Amendment) Act 2012.
Indian trademark law” statutorily protects trademarks as per the Trademark Act, 1999 and also in the common law remedy of passing off. Statutory protection of a trademark is administered by the Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trade Marks, a government agency which calls to the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
The Indian Patent Office is administered by the Office of the Controller General of Patents, Designs & Trade Marks (CGPDTM). This is a subordinate office of the Government of India and administers the Indian law of Patents, Designs and Trade Marks.
The Policy is a comprehensive document that says seven objectives which have been elaborated with actionable steps to be undertaken by the identified nodal ministry/ department towards achieving the objectives:
- IPR Awareness: Outreach and Promotion – To make public awareness about the economic, social and cultural benefits of IPRs among all sections of society.
- Generation of IPRs – To stimulate the creation of IPRs.
- Legal and Legislative Framework – To have better and effective IPR laws, which balance the interests of rights owners with larger public interest.
- Administration and Management – To enhance and strengthen service-oriented IPR administration.
- Commercialization of IPRs – Get value for IPRs by commercialization.
- Enforcement and Adjudication – To enhance the enforcement and adjudicatory mechanisms for combating IPR infringements.
- Human Capital Development – To strengthen and increase human resources, institutions, and capacities for teaching, training, research and skill building in IPRs.