GOVERNMENT OF INDIA TO ROPE IN RETAIL CHAINS TO SELL PRODUCTS CARRYING GEOGRAPHICAL INDICATIONS

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The Ministry of Commerce and Industry, India has recently launched the Geographical Indications (GI) Logo and Tagline on 01.08.2018 in order to facilitate branding, promoting and creating awareness among the public about the benefits of GIs and to encourage the local industry that manufactures products having unique features and qualities.

A GI provides identity to products that possess unique quality and features attributable to their geographical origin and that are manufactured by various artisans, farmers, weavers, craftsmen, etc possessing exceptional skills and knowledge of traditional practices and methods. Further, such GIs may be registered under the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999 as amended thereof (the Act) to ensure protection against misuse or duplication by producers of similarly identical products produced in a different geographical location. As per few newspaper reports, GI registered products in India include Banarasi Sarees, Chanderi fabric, Tirupati Laddoo, blue pottery of Jaipur, Darjeeling Tea, etc.

In furtherance of the protection provided by the Act, the Government has introduced the GI Logo and Tagline, which would now act as a certifying mark to identify all the GIs registered under the Act. Further, the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), India has recently sought tie-ups with big retail chains in India around 07.12.2018 for promotion and sale of GI registered products under the GI Logo and Tagline. This would have a two-fold advantage:

It would facilitate the Government to create awareness and promote the sale of a whole range of registered GI products in India.

It would also ensure quality assurance to the consumers and enable them to easily identify genuine GI products.

As a result, the Government would be able to reach out to a greater number of consumers willing to purchase GI products, now being sold under GI Logo and Tagline, and also encourage the local industry to manufacture more such unique products and expand their business in the country.

Harini Daliparthy

Senior Legal Associate

The Indian Lawyer

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