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CHAPTERVII

LEGALPROTECTIONOF
GEOGRAPHICALINDICATIONININDIA

7.1Introduction
Overtherecentpast,GeographicalIndications(GI)haveemergedasasignificant
formofIntellectualPropertyRights(IPR)issueintheIndiancontext.GIhelpsa
communityofproducerstodifferentiatetheirproductsfromcompetingproductsinthe
marketandbuildgoodwillaroundtheirproducts,oftenfetchingapremiumprice.From
consumerspointofview,GIsactasasignallingdevice,whichhelpsthemidentify
genuinequalityproductsandalsoprotectthemagainstcounterfeits.Inviewoftheir
commercialpotential,adequatelegalprotectionofGIsbecomesnecessarytoprevent
theirmisappropriation.AlthoughIndiahashadinitspossessionaconsiderablenumber
ofproductsthatcouldqualifyforlegalprotectionasgeographicaldesignators,the
initiativestoexploitthispotentialbegunonlyrecentlywhenthecountryestablishedas
suigenerissystemofGIprotectionwiththeenactmentoftheGeographicalIndications
ofGoods(RegistrationandProtection)Act,1999,coupledwiththeGeographical
IndicationsofGoods(RegistrationandProtection)Rules,2002.TheAct,whichbecame
operationalwitheffectfrom15September2003,wasdraftedaspartoftheexerciseinthe
countrytosetinplacenationalIPRlawsasmuchincompliancewithIndiasobligations
undertheAgreementonTradeRelatedAspectsofIntellectualPropertyRights(TRIPs)of
theWorldTradeOrganisation(WTO)soastotakeadvantageoftheminimum
standardsofGIprotectionthattheTRIPssetsoutfortheWTOmemberstocomplywith
intheirrespectivenationallegislations.

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7.2AnoverviewofGIprotectioninIndia
InIndia,thelegalsystemforGIprotectionhasveryrecentlybeendeveloped.The
GeographicalIndicationsofGoods(RegistrationandProtection)Actwasenactedin1999
andhascomeintoforceinSeptember2003(hereaftercalledGIAct).Beforethisact,
therewasnoseparatelegislationforGIsspecifically.However,therewerethree
alternativewaysinwhichthethenexistinglegalsystemsofthecountrycouldbeutilised
forpreventingthemisuseofGIs.
(i)
undertheconsumerprotectionlaws;
(ii)
throughpassingoffactionincourts;and
(iii)throughcertificationtrademarks.1
Amongtheselaws,certificationtrademarks(CTM)weremorefocusedon
recognisedandprotectingindicationofsources.IntheIndiancontext,themostcommon
geographicalnameprotectedundertheCTMsystem,priortotheGIAct,was
DarjeelingTea.2Acertificationtrademarkisunderstoodasamarkadministeredbya
proprietorwhocertifiesthegoodsastotheirorigin,material,modeofmanufacture,or
performanceofservices,qualityaccuracyorothercharacteristics,andthereuponallows

useofthemark.
UndertheCTMsystem,aproprietorofthemarkwhoproposestomerely
administerthemarkbutnotuseithimorherself,appliesfortheregistrationofthesame
togetherwithasetofelaborateregulationsdetailingtheprocessofcertificationforthe
useofthemarkinrelationtothegoodsinquestion.Itisabsolutelyimperativeinthe
KasturiDas,SocioEconomicImplicationsofProtectingGeographicalIndicationsinIndia,August2009,
CentreforWTOStudies,p.6.
2TheTeaBoardofIndiahasregisteredthenameDarjeelingasaCertificationMarkinIndia,USAand
UK.
1

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CTMsystemthatthepersonclaimingproprietorshipoverthemarkdoesnothimor
herselfusethesameinconjunctionwithhisorhergoodsorservices.Itistherefore
usualtofindthatacentralagencyorassociationusuallyadministerthemarkinquestion
andactsasthecertifyingauthority,whichinturnauthorisestheuseofthemarkby
producers/manufacturersinrelationtotheirowngoods.Certificationtrademarkscan
beregisteredundertheTradeMarksActofIndia.
ItmaybenotedthatIndiahasrecentlyestablishedasilkmarktocertify
genuinenessofsilktextilesinIndiaandDarjeeling,acertificationmarksforaspecific
typeofTeaproducedinDarjeelingandcanbemarketed,providedtheproductsatisfies
thesetqualitystandards.Similarly,WOOLMARKcertifiesthatthegoodsonwhichit
isusedaremadeof100%woolandLABELROUGEuseforhighqualityagricultural
productsinFrance.3
Initssimplestform,theprincipleofpassingoffstatesthatNooneisentitledto
passoffhisgoodsasthoseofanother.Theprincipalpurposeofanactionagainst
passingoffistherefore,toprotectthename,reputationandgoodwilloftradersor
producersagainstanyunfairattempttofreerideonthem.Though,India,likemany
othercommonlawcountries,doesnothaveastatutespecificallydealingwithunfair
competition,mostofsuchactsofunfaircompetitioncanbepreventedbywaysofaction
againstpassingoff.
InIndia,GIshavebeengovernedbycommonlawprinciples,whichenablean
aggrievedpersontofileanactionofpassingoffforprotectionofhisright.Inother
words,itisbasedonusageandcommonknowledgeaboutthecharacteristicfeaturesand
Dr.PrabhuddhaGanguli,WTCResearchstudyReportGeographicalIndicationsitsevolvingcontrols,
Jan.2009,p.4.
3

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qualityorreputationthattheproducthasalreadyearnedinthemarketeitherbypublicity
orbyitspresenceinthemarket.AsurveyofdecidedcasesrevealsthatIndiancourts
havemaintainedtheactionofpassingofftoprotectGIs.4
ScotchWhiskyAssociationv.
PravaraSahakarKarkhanaLtd.,
5isaleadingcaseonthissubject.Inthiscase,the
plaintiffScotchWhiskyAssociation,acompanyincorporatedundertheCompaniesAct
ofUnitedKingdominstitutedthepassingoffactionagainstthedefendantsa
manufacturerofvariousbrandsofIndianWhiskylikeblendedscotchwhiskyor
BlendedwithScotchundervariousbrandnames,DrumBeaterandGodTycoon.On
thesefacts,theBombayHighCourtheld:ThePlaintiffhadsufficientinteresttoprevent

passingoffofIndianWhiskymanufacturedbythedefendantandtopreventdamageto
reputationandgoodwillofScotchwhisky.Thedefendantswerepassingofftheirgoods
asblendedScotchwhiskywhichinfacttheywerenot.Thecasethereforemerited
interiminjunction.Thedefendantsresortedtounfairmeansbyusingthewords
BlendedwithScotchandindulgedincolourableimitationandunfairtradinginan
attempttoharvestunjustbenefitsbyappropriationofplaintiffsgoodwill.Thedefendant
wasrestrainedfromadvertisingorofferingforsaleordistributinginanycountry
Whisky,whichisnotScotchwhisky.
ItisevidentfromtheaforesaiddecisionthatthejudiciaryinIndiahasconsistently
extendedtheumbrellaoflegalprotectiontoGIsevenintheabsenceofanylegislationin
forceatthatpointoftime.
TusharKantiSahaandNalinBharti,BeyondWinesandSpirits:DevelopingCountriesGIProductsand
theirPotentialinWTORegimewithSpecialReferencetoIndia,JournalofIntellectualProperlyRights,
Vol.11,March2006,p.892.
5AIR1992Bom294.
4

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7.3GeographicalIndicationsofGoods(RegistrationandProtection)Act,1999An
analysis
7.3.1HistoricalbackgroundoftheGIAct
TheneedforseparatelegislationforGIsinformoftheGIActwasfeltinIndia
duetosomeimportantreasons.
7.3.1.1SocioEconomicPerspective
GeographicalIndicationsareintellectualpropertyrights.Theirfunctionisto
identifyproductsonthemarket,similartotrademarksandtradenames.Wellprotected
andproactivelyused,GIsareaveryinterestingmarketingtoolbecausetheycanconvey
alotofinformationfromtheproducertotheconsumer.GIgivetheproducersofaregion
theexclusiverighttousetheindicationfortheirproductsoriginatingfromthatregion.It
alsomeansthattheyhavetherighttoprohibitanyunauthoriseduseusurpationor
imitationofthesignonaproductthatisnotfromthedesignatedareaorwhichdoesnot
havethequalitiesguaranteedbytheGI.
Rootedinthesoiloftheregionforwhichtheystand,geographicalindications
contributetothesocioeconomicimprovementofregionsaroundtheworld.Theycreate
employment,contributetotheregulationofthemarketandencouragethediversification
ofproduction.Inaddition,theyprotectnaturaltreasuresandmaintainthecultural
heritage.6
Muchliketrademarks,theeconomicrationaleofGIsisbasedonthe
informationasymmetrybetweenbuyersandsellersinthemarketandroleofreputation,
conveyedthroughdistinctivesigns,intalkingsuchasymmetry.ThusGIactsasa
signallingdevicethathelpstheproducerstodifferentiatetheirproductsfromcompeting
productsinthemarketandenablethemtobuildareputationandgoodwillaroundtheir
6

FelixAddorandAlexandraGrazioli,2006,FederalInstituteofIntellectualPropertyavailableat
http://www.ige.ch/e/jurinfo/j110110.shtm.

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productswhichoftenfetchapremiumprice.Finally,geographicalindicationscontribute
tosustainabledevelopment.Thismakesthemvaluabletoproducersinboththeywishto

offertheirdiverseproducts,identifiedbytheGIs,ontheglobalisedmarket.7
GivenitscommercialpotentialthelegalprotectionofGIassumesenormous
significance.Withoutsuchprotection,competitorsnothavinglegitimaterightonaGI
mightridefreeonitsreputation.Suchunfairbusinesspracticeresultinlossofrevenue
forthegenuinerightholdersoftheGIandalsomisleadstheconsumers.Moreover,such
practicesmayeventuallyhamperthegoodwillandreputationassociatedwiththeGI.In
ordertoruleoutitsmisuseandtotapthepotentialeconomicandsocioeconomicbenefits
emanatingfromthisIP,itisessentialtoensureanappropriatelegalprotectionforGIsat
thenationallevel.
7.3.1.2Judicialperspectives
TheissueofprotectionofGIgainedparticularinterestandattentioninIndiaonly
whenapatentwasobtainedforBasmatiRiceintheUnitedStatesbytheRiceTecInc.
andthewidespreadreportofteafromothercountriesbeingpassedoffasDarjeelingTea.
Indiarealisedthatifitneededtoprotectitsowngeographicalindicationsglobally,it
neededtoprotectthematthenationalleveltobeginwith.
7.3.1.2.1BasmatiRicecase
Basmati8isaunique,longgrainaromaticricecultivatedtraditionallyonlyinthe
IndoGangeticplainsofIndiaandPakistan.IndiahasbeenexportingBasmatiriceto
severalcountriesoftheworldincludingtheUS,EuropeandMiddleEastcountriesfor
KasturiDas,supran.1,p.2.
Etymologically,theoriginofthewordBasumaticanbetracedtotheSanskritwordVasumatiwhich
meansearth.Justassmellandfragrancearecloselyassociatedwithearth,basmatiriceisrecognisedbyits
uniquearoma.
7
8

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severaldecadesandaoveraperiodoftime,ithasacquiredauniquepositionintheworld
market.ThepatentingoftheworldfamousBasmatiricethecrownjeweloftheAsian
subcontinentIndiaandPakistanbytheUSCompanyRiceTecInc.wokeIndiaandmany
otherdevelopingcountriesandmadethemawareoftheunfairworldmarkettrend.
TheBasmatiwhichhasextralonggrain,softtextured,aromaticricehasbeen
cultivatedsincetimeimmemorialinthefoothillsoftheHimalayas.Therareagro
climaticconditionsthisregionendowBasmatiricewithcertaincharacteristics,physical
andsensory,notfoundelsewherenoramenabletoreplication.ThismakesBasmatia
premiumproductintheinternationalmarketandtheuniquenessneedstobepreserved
andprotected.9
Basmaticommandsapremiumpricebothindomesticandinternationalmarkets.
ApproximatelyonemillionhectaresinIndiaand0.75millionhectaresinPakistanare
plantedinBasmativarieties,whereitiscultivatedbyhundredsandthousandsofsmall
farmers.10
InIndiaalonebasmatiexportswerevaluedatapproximatelyUS$475millionin
199899.Theserenityofthesurroundingswassuddenlybrokenbyboldnewheadlines
whichreadUSRiceCompanysaysIndiaandPakistandontownwordBasmati.Ever
sincethecompany,RiceTec,basedinTexas,UnitedStates,patentedBasmatirice,there
hasbeenahueandcryinIndiaandPakistan.Thefearofculturalpiracyfromthe
westernmultinationalsisfeltbytheIndianfarmers.11
ChandarM.LalandGayathriJambunathan,IndiaandPakistanGeographicalIndicationstheBasmati
issue.SubmittedtotheInternationalTrademarksAssociation(INTA)AnnualMeeting,SeattleMay1999,
http://www.iprlawindia.org.doc.
10SumanSahaiLookingbeyondBasmati,EconomicandPoliticalWeekly,February21,1998,p.371.
11FafiGenoTypeTheBasmatiRicePatent,1998,http://www.rafi.organd,BerneDeclarationpress
9

packages(inGerman)DasBasmatiPatentSeptember,1999,http://www.evb.cal.

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InFebruary1996,theAPEDA12hasfoundthatRiceTechadregisteredfora
trademarkforexportingwhattheycalled.TexasmatiintheUKandhadlodgedacase
againstRiceTecinanUKeconomiccourt.Thusthiswastheauthoritystrategyi.e.,to
filesuchcasesinallthecountriesthatRiceTecapproachesfortrademarks.
Thefirstlegalissue,whicharoseintheprotectionofBasmatiasageographical
indicationisastowhetheritisagenericname?RiceTecinitsclaimstatesthatitisa
genericnameandthereforecannotbeprotectedasageographicalindication. 13
VariousreportshavereferredtotheUSCompanysuseofsuchnamesas
Basmati,Kasmati,JexamatiandJasmati.14
Infact,thecompanyhasusedthe
brandnamesKasmati,Texmati,andJasmatiintheUSandUKsincebeforethepatent
wasissued.IthasbeenusingthetermBasmatiasagenerictermforconsiderably
longer,RiceJechasproducedandmarketedTexasBasmatiandAmericanBasmatirice
andlabellingitassuchfor20yearsandexportingtheproductsfor15yearswithno
objectioneverpreviouslyraised,thecompanystamensays. 15
SincethewordBasmatiisnotaplacename,itsvalidityasageographical
indicationwoulddependonwhetherBasmaticanbeshowntobecloselyand
exclusivelyassociatedwithageographicalarea,althoughtheworldtradeagreementcalls
itasgeographicappellation.16
Thenameandthepatentarecompletelyseparateissues;andthereisalsoa
distinctdifferencebetweentheuseofBasmatiasagenericterm,andtheuseofbrand
AgricultureProductsExportsDevelopmentAuthority.
ThiscontroversywasaresultoftheresearchpreparedbyanIndianscientistfromtheIndianAgricultural
ResearchInstitutebeingusedbyRiceTectostatethatBasmatiisagenerictermandthereforecannotbe
protectedasageographicalindications.seeRadhikaSingaTheEconomicTimes,NewDelhi,August11,
1998.
14http://www.rediff.com/business/1998/mar/12rice.htm.
15http://www.economictimes.com/today/12.
16http://www.itd.or/issues/india6.htmm.
12
13

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namessuchasTexmatiandJasmati.Twotypesofintellectualpropertyareinvolvedwith
names;TrademarksandGeographicalIndications.17
TheconcernwhatIndianauthoritieshadwasthefearofRiceTecgettinga
trademarkonTexmati,TexmatiisdeceptivelysimilartoBasmatiandthereforecannotbe
registeredasatrademark.Anactionofpassingoffwasalsoexpectedtosucceed.
Howeverthiswasonlyanimmediatesolutionavailabletotheprobleminhand
sincebyvirtueofArticle24.9oftheTRIPsAgreement,atthattimeIndiahadnolaw
protectingGI.ThispreventedIndianfromapproachingtheWTOdisputesettlement
bodyandaskinganyothermemberscountrytoprotectourGI.Thereforetheonlyhope
weIndianshadwasrelyingontortprotectionofpassingoffandunfaircompetitionlaws
asusual.
Itisextremelylaborioustoprovepassingoffrepeatedly.Moreover,therewasthe
dangerofthelackofthetortlaw(passingoff)protectioninthecountrywhereweseekto
protectourGIalongwiththefactthatcourtsinUShavebeenextremelyunpredictableon
thisissueThiswasthepositionofIndiawhichhighlightedtheneedtolegislatelawsfor

protectionofGIinourcountry.18
7.3.1.2.2DarjeelingTeacase
DarjeelingTeacouldbeconsideredasthemostimportantgeographical
indicationalongwithBasmatiforIndia.Darjeelingteaistheteaproducedinthehilly
areasofDarjeelingdistrictofWestBengal.
Today,IndiaistheWorldslargestgrowerofteawithatotalproductionof826.17
millionkilogramsintheyear2002.ThedistrictofDarjeelingissituatedintheStateof
Theuseofplacenamesorworldsassociatedwithaplacetoidentifytheorigin,typeandqualityofa
productfore.g.;champagne.
18AshwathU.Rao,BasmatiIssue,http://www.iprlawindia.org.
17

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WestBengal,India.Teahasbeencultivated,grownandproducedinteagardens
geographicallylocatedinthisareaforthelast150years.Theuniqueandcomplex
combinationofagroclimaticconditionsprevailingintheregionandtheproduction
regulationsimposed,lendstheteaadistinctiveandnaturallyoccurringqualityand
flavourwhichhaswonthepatronageandrecognitionofdisceriningconsumersallover
theworldforwelloveracentury.Theteaproducedintheregionandhavingspecial
characteristicsisandhasforlongbeenknowntothetradeandthepublicalloverthe
wordsasDarjeelingtea.19Accordingtorecords,thecommercialteagardenswere
plantedbyBritishteainterestsin1852.Darjeelingwasthenonlyasparselypopulated
hamletwhichwasbeingusedasahillresortbythearmyandaffluentpeople.However,
by1866,Darjeelinghad39gardensproducingatotalcropof21,000kilogramsoftea
harvestedfrom4,400hectares.By1874,teacultivationinDarjeelingwasfoundtobea
profitableventureandtherewere113gardenswithapproximately6000hectares.Today,
nearly17,400hectaresin85teagardensproducearound11.5millionkilogramsoftea. 20
TheEasterandspringflusheshavetheuniqueDarjeelingflavourandcommanda
highprice.Mostoftheteacomingontotheworldmarket,ascounterfeitDarjeeling
seemstobecomingfromKenyaandSrilanka.TheothersourceissaidtobeNepal.
NepaleseteaisproducedinsimilargeographicconditionedtothatofDarjeelingtea.
About60percentofNepaleseteaisexportedtoIndiaandmostoftheNepalesetea
estatesgardensareownedbyIndians.ThereareallegationsthatNepaleseteaisimported
intoIndiaisrepackagedasDarjeelingteaandexportedNepalissmallproducesand
exporterofteaintheworldmarket.
RajendraKumarandVasundharaNaik,DarjeelingTeaChallengesintheProtectionandEnforcement
ofIntellectualPropertyRights,http://www.wipolint/index.html.in
20Ibid.
19

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Whatwillhappenif40000tonsofcounterfeitDarjeelingdisappearsfromthe
worldmarketbecauseofprotectionofthegeographicalindicationforDarjeelingTea?
WecouldexpectthepriceofDarjeelingteatogoupdependingonthepriceelasticityof
demandofDarjeelingtea,whichwillbenefittheproducersofDarjeelingtea.
1.counterfeitDarjeelingproducedinIndiaandconsumedinIndia.
2.counterfeitDarjeelingproducedinothercountriesconsumedinIndia.
3.counterfeitDarjeelingproducedinIndiaandconsumedoutsideIndia.
4.counterfeitDarjeelingproducedinIndiaandconsumedoutsideIndia. 21
SinceDarjeelinghasahighreputation,boththeTeaBoardandtheDarjeeling

plantersAssociationhavebeeninvolvedatvariouslevelsinprotectingthiscommon
heritage.Theprotectionisessentiallygearedto:
(i)
PreventmisuseofthewordDarjeelingforothertypesofteasoldworld
wide.
(ii)
Delivertheauthenticproducttotheconsumer.
(iii)Enablethecommercialbenefitoftheequityofthebrandtoreachthe
Indianindustryandhencetheplantationworker.
(iv)
AchieveinternationalstatussimilartochampagneorScotchWhiskyboth
intermsofbrandequityandgovernance/administration.
OneofthefirstsignificantmeasureswastakenbytheTeaBoardtoprotect
Darjeelingasageographicalindicationabout15yearsagobydevelopingaDarjeeling
Logo.TheDarjeelinglogocreatedin1983hassincebeenregisteredinvarious
NiranjaRao,GeographicalIndicationsinIndianContext:ACaseStudyofDarjeelingTea,Sept.2003,
workingpaperNo.110,IndianCouncilforResearchonInternationalEconomicRelations,p.13.
21

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jurisdictionsincludingUK,USA,Canada,JapanandEgyptandsomeEuropeancountries
asaTrademark/CertificationTrademark/collectiveMark.
TheTeaBoardhasobtainedhomeprotectionbyregisteringtheDarjeeling
LogoandalsothewordDarjeelingasacertificationmarkundertheIndianTradeand
MerchandiseMarksAct,1958.UnderthenewGeographicalIndicationofGoods
(RegistrationandProtection)Act,1999(whichhascomeintoforceonSeptember15,
2003),theteaBoardhasalsofiledapplicationsfortheDarjeelinglogoaswellas
Darjeelingwordtoberegisteredasageographicalindication. 22UnderthenewAct
DarjeelingisregisteredasGI.
7.3.1.3TRIPsandProtectionforDarjeelingTea
TheTRIPsagreementwillhelpinprotectingthegeographicalindication
DarjeelingteainthemembercountriesofWTO.23
IsArticle23protectionnecessaryforDarjeelingTea?Whatdoesthe
geographicalindicationforDarjeelingtealosebynothavingArticle23protection?
Followingarethevariouscomponentsofenhancedprotectionaffordedbyarticle23.
1)Article23.1mandatesmemberstoprovidethelegalmeansforinterestedpartiesto
preventuseofageographicalindicationforproductsnotoriginatingintheplace
indicatedbythegeographicalindicationinquestion,evenwherethetrueoriginof
thegoodsisindicatedIntheabsenceofsuchprotectionforteaitwouldbe
possibleforexample,touseDarjeelingTeawithproduceofKenya.Butthe
producersofKenyawouldnotbeabletousetheDarjeelingtealogoifitis
22
23

Supran.19
Article22.

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protectedinKenyaoritcouldbestoppedattheboarderoftheimportingcountryif
thelogoisprotectedinthatcountry.
2)Article23.1prohibitstheuseofgeographicalindicationifthegeographical
indicationisusedintranslation.Lackofthisprotectioninthecaseofteamay

notposetoomuchofathreattoDarjeelingteabecauseitisdifficulttotranslatethe
geographicalnameofDarjeeling.ThismaybetrueofallIndiangeographical
indications.
3)Article23.1prohibitstheuseofageographicalindicationaccompaniedby
expressionssuchaskind,type,style,imitationthelike.Asthisisnot
applicabletotea,itwouldbepossibleforexample,forteaproducersofKenyato
putthewordsImitationofDarjeelingTeaonitsteaproducts.Buttheycannot
usetheDarjeelingteaLogoifitisprotectedinthatcountryasstoppedattheborder
ifitisprotectedinthecountryofimportation;iftheyusethelogotheyare
infringingthegeographicalindication.
4)Article23.2providesthattheregistrationofatrademarkforwineswhichcontains
orconsistsofageographicalindicationidentifyingwinesorforspiritswhich
containorconsistsofageographicalindicationidentifyingspiritsshallberefused
asinvalidated,exofficioifamemberslegislationsopermitsorattherequestofan
interestedparty,withrespecttosuchwinesorspiritsnothavingthisorigin.Thisis
notapplicabletotea,buttheprotectionaffordedbyArticle22.3inrespectof
trademarksseemstobesufficient.Article23.2merelyassertsthatincaseofteafor
example,itispossibletograntatrademark,HyderabadTea,evenwhen

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HyderabadisageographicalindicationanditisknownthatHyderabaddoesnot
produceanytea.
5)Article23.3dealswithhomonymousgeographicalindicationsandprovidesthatin
thecaseofhomonymousgeographicalindicationsforwines,protectionshallbe
awardedtoeachindication.Homonymousgeographicalindicationsmaynotbe
aproblemforallmostallgeographicalindicationscomingoutofIndianotonlyfor
teabutforallproducts.
6)Article23.3providesfortheestablishmentofamultilateralsystemof
notificationandregistrationofgeographicalindicationsforwineseligiblefor
protectioninthosemembersparticipatinginthesystem.Infactalegally
enforceablemultilateralsystemcouldbetheonlybenefitfromextensionofArticle
23protectiontootherproducts.
TheTRIPsagreementleavesittothememberstodecideonthemodeof
protectionofgeographicalindications.Themodesusedbymembercountriestoprotect
geographicalindicationsare;(1)asuigenerislaw;(2)certificationorcollectmarksunder
trademarklaw;(3)underunfaircompetitionorconsumerprotectionlaws.Inthose
countries,whichprotectgeographicalindicationsunderasuigenerislaworcertification
orcollectivemarksundertrademarklaw,itispossibletogetprotectionforalogo
indicatingthegeographicalindication.Iftheproducersandexportersofthecounterfeit
goodsusethelogoitwillbeaninfringementandcanbechallengedincourts.Herethe
producerofgenuineproducthasjusttoprovethattheproducerofcounterfeitproducer
isnotauthorisedtousethelogo,ashedoesnotproduceitintheregion,whichthe
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geographicalindicationlogosuggests.Iftheproducerandexporterofthecounterfeit
gooddonotusethelogo,heisnotinfringinganygeographicalindication. 24
Incountries,whichproviderelieftomisuseofgeographicalindicationsonly

throughunfaircompetitionlaworconsumerprotectionlaw,itisnotpossibletoseek
protectionforalogodepictingthegeographicalindication.Incasetheproducerand
exporterofcounterfeitgoodsusesgeographicalindicationunauthorisedly,theproducer
ofthegenuineproductcanclaimthatconsumersarebeingmisledbecausetheconsumers
identifythelogowiththegeographicalindicationevenwithoutexplicitprotection.In
casetheproducerandexporterofthecounterfeitproductdonotusethelogo
unauthorisedlyitbecomesdifficulttoprovethatconsumersarebeingmisledorthereis
unfaircompetition.Butnotmanycountriesareprotectinggeographicalindicationsonly
throughunfaircompetitionorconsumerprotectionlaws.
7.3.1.4TRIPscompliance
Inviewoftheircommercialpotential,adequatelegalprotectionofGIsbecomes
necessarytopreventtheirmisappropriation.AlthoughIndiahashadinitspossessiona
considerablenumberofproductsthatcouldqualifyforlegalprotectionasgeographical
designators,theinitiativestoexploitthisprotectionbeganonlyrecentlywhenthecountry
establishedasuigenerissystemofGIprotectionwiththeenactmentofThe
GeographicalIndicationsofGoods(RegistrationandProtection)Act,1999(GIAct
1999),coupledwiththeGeographicalIndicationsofGoods(RegistrationandProtection)
Rules,2002(GIRules2002).TheAct,whichbecameoperationalwitheffectfrom15
September2003,wasdraftedasapartoftheexerciseinthecountrytosetinplace
nationalIPRlawsasmuchincompliancewithIndiasobligationsundertheagreementon
24

Supran.21.

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TradeRelatedAspectsofIntellectualPropertyRights(TRIPs)oftheWorldTrade
Organisation(WTO)soastotakeadvantageoftheminimumstandardsofGIprotection
(alongsideotherIPRs)thattheTRIPssetoutfortheWTOmemberstocomplyintheir
respectivenationallegislations.
7.3.2AnalysisoftheGIAct
PriortoenactmentofGIAct,25therewasnolawfortheprotectionof
geographicalindicationinIndia.Theneedandjustificationforthislawhasbeenaptly
statedinthestatementofobjectandreasonsasunder:
Atpresentthereisnospecificlawgoverninggeographicalindicationsofgoods
inthecountrywhichcouldadequatelyprotecttheinterestsofproducersofsuchgoods.
Exclusionofunauthorisedpersonsfrommisusinggeographicalindicationswouldserve
toprotectconsumersfromdeception,addtotheeconomicprosperityoftheproducersof
suchgoodsandalsopromotegoodsbearingIndiangeographicalindicationsinthe
exportsmarket.Unlessageographicalindicationisprotectedinthecountryofitsorigin
thereisnoobligationundertheagreementonTradeRelatedAspectsofIntellectual
PropertyRights(TRIPs)forothercountriestoextendreciprocalprotection.Indiawould,
ontheotherhand,berequiredtoprotectiontogoodsimportedfromothercountrieswhich
provideforsuchprotection.Inviewoftheabovecircumstances,itisconsidered
necessarytohaveacomprehensivelegislationforregistrationandforprovidingadequate
protectionforgeographicalindications.
Untilrecentlyandinpast,protectionfromsuchmisuseofgeographical
indicationswasgrantedthroughpassingoffactionincourts 26orthroughcertification
25
26

GeographicalIndicationsofGoods(RegistrationandProtection)Act,1999
Remedyundertort.

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marks.27However,inordertoprovidebetterprotectiontogeographicalindications,the
ParliamentenactedGeographicalIndicationsofGoods(RegistrationandProtection)Act,
199928whichisquitesimilarandinlineswiththeNewZealandGIAct.Thisreceived
theassentofthePresidentofIndiaonthe30thDecember1999.
ThisActseekstoprovideforregistrationandbetterprotectionofgeographical
indicationsrelatingtogoods.Itexcludesunauthorisedpersonsfrommisusing
geographicalindications.Thiswouldprotecttheinterestofproducers,manufacturers
andtherebyconsumerfrombeingdeceivedbythefalsityofgeographicaloriginto
economicprosperityoftheproducerofsuchgoodsandpromotegoodsbearing
geographicalindicationsinexportmarket.Unlessageographicalindicationisprotected
inthecountryofitsorigin,thereisnoobligationundertheagreementunderArticle22of
theTRIPsagreementforothercountriestoextendreciprocalprotection.Itisinthis
contextthattheActwasenacted.29
TheActhasbeendividedintoninechapters.
ChapterIispreliminarywhichinteralia,definesvarioustermsusedintheAct.Chapter
IIdealswiththeappointment,powersandestablishmentofRegistry.Italsoprovidesfor
registrationinrespecttoparticulargoodsandareasandprohibitionofregistration.
CheaperIIIdealswithprocedureanddurationofregistration.ChapterIVdescribesthe
effectofregistration.ChapterVcontainsspecialprovisionsrelatingtotrademarkand
prioruser.ChapterVIprovidesforrectificationandcorrectionoftheRegister.Chapter
VIrelatestoappealsandAppellateBoard.ChapterVIIprescribespenaltiesand
procedure.Thelasti.e.,ChapterIXismiscellaneous.
UndertheTradeandMerchandiseMarksAct(1958).
WTOandTRIPsAnIndianperspective,http://www.indiainfoline.com/legal/feat/wttr.html.
29StatementofobjectandReasonsoftheBill.
27
28

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7.3.2.1SomeSalientandImportantFeaturesoftheAct
1.Definitions
Section2(e)oftheActdefinesgeographicalindicationsinrelationtogoodstomean:
Anindicationwhichidentifiessuchgoodsasagriculturalgoods,naturalgoods
ormanufacturedgoodsasoriginating,ormanufacturedintheterritoryofcounty,
oraregionorlocalityinthatterritory,whereagivenquality,reputationorother
characteristicofsuchgoodsisessentiallyattributabletoitsgeographicalorigin
andincasewheresuchgoodsaremanufacturedgoodsoneoftheactivitiesof
eithertheproductionorofprocessingorpreparationsofthegoodsconcerned
takesplaceinsuchterritory,regionorlocality,asthecasemaybe.30

Meaningofindication
31

Thewordindicationhasalsobeendefinedtoinclude:
(i)
anyname(includingabbreviationofaname)
(ii)
geographicalorfigurativerepresentations;or
(iii)anycombinationorsuggestthegeographicaloriginorgoodstowhichit
applies.
Conceptofgoods
32

TheActalsodefinesgoodstomeanany:
(i)
Agriculturalgoods.
(ii)
Naturalgoods.
(iii)Manufacturinggoods.
(iv)
Goodsofhandicraftandfoodstuff.

Forthepurposesofthisclause,anynamewhichisnotthenameofcountry,regionorlocalityofthat
countryshallalsobeconsideredasthegeographicalindicationifitrelatestoaspecificgeographicalarea
andisuseduponorinrelationtoparticulargoodsoriginatingfromthatcountry,regionorlocality,asthe
casemaybe.
31Section2(g).
32Section2(f).
30

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233
Theabovedefinitionisnotexhaustivebutmerelyillustrative.Itwouldnotbeout
ofplacetomentionthatwhiletheTRIPsagreementreferstogoodstheIndianAct
classifiessuchgoods.
Producerinrelationtogoods,meansanypersonwho
(i)
ifsuchgoodsareagriculturalgoods,producesthegoodsandincludesthe
personwhoprocessesorpackagessuchgoods;
(ii)
ifsuchgoodsarenaturalgoods,exploitsthegoods;
(iii)ifsuchgoodsarehandicraftorindustrialgoods,makesormanufactures
thegoods,andincludesanypersonwhotradesordealsinsuchproduction,
exploitation,makingormanufacturing,asthecasemaybe,ofthegoods 33
TheTRIPsdefinitionreferstogoodsingeneral,theIndianGIActspecifiesthe
goodstobeeitheragriculturalgoodsornaturalgoodsormanufacturedgoodsthatcan
qualifyasaGI.Further,intheIndianAct,ifaproducerappliesforaGIfora
manufacturedgood,heorshemustmakesurethatatleastoneoftheactivitiesofeither
theproductionorprocessingorpreparationofthegoodmusttakeplaceintheterritory.
Inthatsense,theGIActismorerestrictivethantheTRIPsdefinition.34
ThiscanbeexplainedbytakingDarjeelingteaasaninstance.Darjeelingtea
involvesmanufacturebecausethegreentealeavespluckedfromtheteabusheshaveto
gothrougharangeofrigorousprocessingstagesbeforeturningintothefinalproduct
(calledmadetea),whichisultimatelysoldinthemarket.Nowevenifthetealeaves
arepluckedfromDarjeelingregion,theGIActwillnotallowthefinalproducttobe
designatedasDarjeelingtea,unlesstheprocessingalsotakesplacewithintheDarjeeling
Section21(k).
KasturiDas,ProtectionofGeographicalIndications:AnOverviewofSelectIssueswithParticular
ReferencetoIndiaworkingpaper8,2007,CentreforTradeandDevelopment(centad),NewDelhi,India.
33
34

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234
region.TheTRIPsdefinitionwill,however,allowthefinalproducttobedesignatedas
Darjeelingtea,eveniftheprocessingtakesplaceoutsideDarjeeling,becausenomatte
wheretheprocessingtakesplace,thegivenqualityorcharacteristics(suchasflavour,
etc.)ofthefinalproductwillessentiallybeattributabletoitsgeographicalorigin.35

Asforagivenquality,reputationandothercharacteristic,TRIPsdoesnotclarify
anyoftheserequirementsfurther.ThusTRIPsissilentonwhethertheserequirements
implyonlysuchqualitiesandcharacteristics,whichmaybeattributedtonaturalfactors
(e.gclimate,topography,etc,),orwhetherthosecharacteristicsthatresultfromhuman
factorse.g.specialisedskillsofartisans)mayalsobecoveredunderthedefinition
containedinArticle22.1.UnlikeTRIPs,theGIActexplicitlymentionshumanfactors.
Section11(2)(a)oftheGIAct,whichstipulateswhatanapplicationforGIregistration
shouldcontain,referstothegeographicalenvironment,withitsinherentnaturaland
humanfactors.Againaspersection32(1)oftheGIRules,anapplicationforaGIis
requiredtobesupportedbythedetaileddescriptionofthehumancreativityinvolved
andtheparticularsofspecialhumanskillinvolved.Thesignificanceoftheexplicit
referencetohumanfactorsintheGIActmaybeappreciatedwhenjudgedinthelightof
thefactthatIndiahasinitspossessionnumeroushandicraftsandhandloomproductsthat
areapttobeprotectedasGIsandintheproductionoftheseitemsspecialisedhuman
skillsandcraftsmanshipplayasignificantrole.
35

Ibid.

Page 21
235
VariousstagesoffilingandgrantofGIareexplainedinfigure1
Figure1:GIregistrationprocessinIndia
(2)RegistrationofGeographicalIndication
Theprotectionisgrantedtogeographicalindicationsthroughregistration.The
registeringauthorityistheRegistrarofGeographicalIndications.
Whocanapplyforregistration?
(i)
anyassociateofpersons;
(ii)
producers;or
(iii)anyorganisationorauthorityestablishedbyorunderanylawrepresenting
theinterestoftheproducersoftheconcernedgoods.
Whomtoapply?

Page 22
236
TheapplicationmustbemadetotheRegistrarundertheAct,theController
GeneralofPatents,DesignsandTrademarksappointedundersubsection(1)ofsection3
oftheTrademarksAct,1999shallnecessarybetheRegistrarofGeographical
Indications.Heshallbeassistedbysuchnumberofofficer,whichthecentral
governmentmaythinkfit.36
Afullfledgedmodernpatentofficeandthecountrysfirstgeographicalindication
(GI)registrywasputupinChennaiwhichisreallyagoodstepforwardinthisfield.This
registrywillsatisfytherequirementsmentionedintheActfurthersupplementingit. 37
Wheretofiletheapplication?
EveryapplicationshallbefiledintheofficeoftheGeographicalIndications
Registrywithinwhoseterritoriallimits,theterritoryofthecountryortheregionor
localityinthecountrytowhichthegeographicalindicationsrelatesissituated.
ContentsoftheApplication
Theapplicationforregistrationmustcontainthefollowing:

(i)astatementastohowthegeographicalindicationservestodesignatethegoodsas
originatingfromtheconcernedterritoryinrespectofspecificquality,reputationor
othercharacteristicswhicharedueexclusivelyoressentiallytobegeographical,
environmental,withitsinherentnaturalandhumanfactors,andtheproduction,
processingorpreparationofwhichtakesplaceinsuchterritory,regionorlocality;
(ii)theclassofgoodstowhichthegeographicalindicationshallapply;
Section11.
Theofficewebsite(www.patent.office.nic.in)providesinformationonpatentsandthegeographical
indicationsregistry.
36
37

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237
(iii)thegeographicalmapoftheterritoryofthecountryorregionorlocalityinwhich
thegoodsoriginateorarebeingmanufactured;
(iv)theparticularsregardingtheappearanceofthegeographicalindicationastowhether
itiscomprisedofthewordsorfigurativeelementsorboth;
(v)astatementcontainingsuchparticularsoftheproducersoftheconcernedgoods,if
anyproposedtobeinitiallyregisteredwiththeregistrationofthegeographical
indicationasmaybeprescribed;and
(vi)suchotherparticularsasmaybeprescribed.
Onacceptanceofthisapplicationtheregistrarofgeographicalindications 38shall
advertiseit.39
Anypersonmayopposeitwithinthreemonthsfromthedateof
advertisementorextendedperiodofnotmorethanonemonth. 40Theregistrarshall,after
hearingtheparties,ifsorequired,decidewhetherandsubjecttowhatconditionsor
limitations,ifany,theregistrationistobepermitted. 41
Thus,wheretheapplicationhas
notbeenopposedandthetimefornoticeofoppositionhasexpired;ortheapplication
wasopposedandithasbeendecidedinfavouroftheapplicant,theregistrarshallregister
thesaidgeographicalindicationandtheauthorisedusersifany,somentionedinthe
application.42
Onceageographicalindicationisregistered,anyproducersoftheconcerned
goodsmayapplytotheregistrarforregisteringhimasanauthoriseduserforsuch
geographicalindication.
Section3(1)(TheControllerGeneralofPatens,DesignsandTrademarksisalsotheRegistrarof
GeographicalIndications).
39Section13.(1)
40Section1491)
41Section14(5).
42Section6(6).
38

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238
EffectofRegistrationNopersonshallbeentitledtoinstituteanyproceedingto
preventorrecoverdamagesfortheinfringementofanunregisteredgeographical
indication.Thisforbidstheinstitutionofproceedingsforinjunctionsorfordamages.
NothingintheActofGeographicalIndicationsofGoodsshallbedeemedtoaffectthe
rightofactionsagainstanypersonforpassingoffgoodsasthegoodsofanotherpersonor
theremediesinrespectthereof.43
ProhibitionofRegistrationofCertainGeographicalIndications
FollowinggeographicalindicationsarenotregistrableundertheAct:44

(i)
theuseofwhichwouldbelikelytodeceiveorcauseconfusion;
(ii)
theuseofwhichwouldbecontrarytoanylawforthetimebeinginforce;
(iii)whichcomprisesorcontainsscandalousorobscenematter;
(iv)
whichcomprisesorcontainsanymatterlikelytohurtthereligious
susceptibilitiesofanyclassorsectionofthecitizensofIndia;
(v)
whichwouldotherwisebedisentitledtoprotectioninacourt;
(vi)
which,althoughliterallytrueastotheterritory,regionorlocalityinwhich
thegoodsoriginate,butfalselyrepresenttothepersonsthatthegoods
originateinanotherterritory,regionorlocality;
(vii)Whicharedeterminedtobegenericnamesorindicationsofgoodsandare,
therefore,notorceasedtobeprotectedintheircountryoforigin,orwhich
havefallenintodisuseinthatcountry.Genericnameorindicationmeans
thenameofgoodswhichalthoughrelatestotheplaceortheregionwhere
thegoodswasoriginallyproducedormanufactured,haslostitsoriginal
43
44

Section20.
Section9

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239
meaningandhasbecomethecommonnameofsuchgoodsandservesasa
designationforasindicationofthekind,nature,typeorotherpropertyor
characteristicofthegoods.
TheregistrationofaGIshallbeforaperiodoftenyearsbutmay
berenewedfromtimetotimeforanindefiniteperiod. 45
RightsconferredbyRegistration
Itismandatorytogetageographicalindicationregisteredinordertoclaimany
rightsinrespectofsuchindicationundertheAct. 46However,therightsofactionagainst
personforpassingoffgoodsasthegoodsofanotherpersonortheremediesinrespect
thereofshallremainunaffected.47
Theregistrationofageographicalindicationshallgive:
(i)totheregisteredproprietorandtheauthoriseduseroruserstherightto
obtainreliefinrespectofinfringementofsuchgeographicalindication;
(ii)totheauthorisedusertheexclusiverighttotheuseofthegeographical
indicationinrelationtothegoodsinrespectofwhichthegeographical
indicationisregistered.
(3)SpecialprovisionsrelatingtoTrademarksandpriorusers.
TheRegistrarofTrademarksshall,suomotuorattherequestofaninterested
party,refuseorinvalidatetheregistrationoftrademarkwhichcontainsorconsistsofa
geographicalindicationasitwouldleadtoexpropriationofapublicpropertybyan
individualleadingtoconfusioninthemarket. 48
Section18(1).
Section2(1).
47Section20(2).
48Section25.
45
46

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240
TheGeographicalIndicationsActprotectsatrademarkwhichcontainsor
consistsofageographicalindicationwhichhasbeenappliedfororregisteredingodfaith
underthetrademarkslaworwheresuchtrademarkshavebeenusedingoodfaithbefore
thecommencementoftheActorbeforethedateoffilingofanapplicationfor
registrationofageographicalindication.ThisActshallnotapplytogeographical
indicationwithrespecttogoodsorclassorclassesofgoodswhichhavebecomethe
commonnameofsuchgoodsinIndiaonorbefore1stJanuary1995.ThisActprotects
therightofanypersontousehisnameorthenameofhispredecessorinbusinessexcept
wheresuchnameisliabletocauseconfusionormisledthepublic.ThisActprovidesthat
noactioninconnectionwiththeuseofregistrationofatrademarkshallbetakenafter
fiveyearsfromthedatefromwhichsuchuseorregistrationwhichinfringesany
geographicalindicationregisteredunderthisActhasbecomeknowntotheregistered
proprietorortheauthoriseduser.
(4)InfringementoftheRegisteredGeographicalIndication
Aperson,whoisnotanauthoriseduserofaregisteredgeographicalindication,
infringesitwhenhe:
(i)
usesasuchgeographicalindicationbyanymeansinthedesignationsor
presentationofgoodsthatindicatesorsuggeststhatsuchgoodsoriginatein
ageographicalareaotherthanthetrueplaceoforiginofsuchgoodsina
mannerwhichmisleadsthepersonsastothegeographicaloriginofsuch
goods;or
Page 27
241
(ii)useranygeographicalindicationinsuchmannerwhichconstitutesanact
ofunfaircompetition49includingpassingoffinrespectofregistered
geographicalindication;or
(iii)usesanothergeographicalindicationtothegoodswhich,althoughliterally
trueastotheterritory,regionorlocalityinwhichthegoodsoriginate,
falselyrepresentstothepersonsthatthegoodsoriginateintheterritory,
regionorlocalityinrespectofwhichsuchregisteredgeographical
indicationrelates.
Itisalsoaninfringementtouseageographicalindicationinrespectofgoodsnot
originatingintheplaceindicatedbysuchgeographicalindication,eveniftrueoriginof
suchgoodsisalsoindicated,andthegeographicalindicationisaccompaniedby
expressionsuchaskind,style,imitationorthelikeexpression.50
(5)AdditionalProtectionofcertaingoods
TheCentralGovernmentmaybynotificationintheOfficialGazetteprovidefor
additionalprotectionforcertaingoodswhicharenotified.AGIsoncelawfullyacquired
theirdealinginsuchgoodsshallnotconstituteaninfringementlessthegoodsare
impairedaftertheyhavebeenputinthemarket.
(6)RectificationandcorrectionofRegister
TheregisterortheAppellateBoardmaycancelorvarytheregistrationofGIsor
ofanauthoriseduserforthecontraventionorfailuretoobservetheconditionsenteredon
theregister.Itenableanypersonaggrievedbytheabsenceoromissionofanyentryin
theregisterwithoutsufficientcauseoranyentrywronglyontheregisterbytheerroror

Actofunfaircompetitionmeansanyactofcompetitioncontrarytohonestpracticesinindustrialor
commercialmatters.
50Section22(3).
49

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242
defect,toapplytotheAppellateBoardortheregistertopassappropriateorders.The
RegistrarandtheAppellateboardcansuomotoaftergivingnoticethepartiesconcerned
andhearingthem,passappropriateordersforcancelling,varyingorrectifyingthe
register.51
(7)AppealstotheAppellateBoard
AnypersonaggrievedbyanorderordecisionoftheRegistrarunderthisAct,or
therulesmadethereunder,mayfileanappealtotheAppellateBoard.Suchappealmust
befiledwithinthreemonthsfromthedateonwhichtheorderordecisionis
communicatedtotheaggrievedparties.52
(8)Remediesforinfringementofageographicalindication
Theremediesavailableforprotectionofgeographicalindicationsmaybroadlybe
classifiedintotwocategories.
(i)
civilremedies;and
(ii)
criminalremedies.
CivilRemedies
TheActprovidesforthefollowingcivilremediesforinfringementofaregistered
geographicalindication;
(a)Injunction
(b)Damagesoraccountofprofits
(c)Deliveryupoftheinfringinglabelsandindications.
51

B.L.Wadehra,LawRelatingtoPatentsTrademarksCopyrightDesignsandGeographicalIndications,
2ndedn,Delhi:UniversalLawPublishingCo.PvtLtd,2000,p.513.
52Section31.

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243
Theseremediesareinclusive,notexhaustingandthecourtmayprovidesome
otherremediesinadditiontotheaforesaid,suchasAntonPillerorder. 53
(a)Injunction
Injunctionincludestemporaryinjunctionandpermanentinjunction.Further,the
courtmayalsoorderanexparteinjunctionfor
(i)
discoveryofdocuments;
(ii)
preservingofinfringinggoods,documentsorotherevidencewhicharerelated
tothesubjectmatterofthesuit;and
(iii)restrainingthedefendantformdisposingof,ordealingwithhisassetsina
mannerwhichmayadverselyaffectplaintiffsabilitytorecoverdamages,costs
orotherpecuniaryremedieswhichmaybefinallyawardedtotheplaintiff.
Theaforesaidremedyofinjunctionismoreeffectiveandcanpreventagreater
harmtotheplaintiff.

(b)Damagesoraccountofprofits
Theremedyofdamagesoraccountofprofitsisnotcumulativebutalternative.
Theplaintiffhastoelectoneofthetworemediesatanearlierstageofthesuit.The
remedyofdamages(otherthannominaldamages)oraccountofprofitsmaybedenied
wheredefendantsatisfiesthecourtthathewasunawareandhadnoreasonablegroundfor
believingthatthegeographicalindicationoftheplaintiffwasregisteredwhenhe
Inappropriatecasesthecourtmayonanapplicationbytheplaintiffpassanexparteorderrequiringthe
defendanttopermittheplaintiffaccompaniedbysolicitororattorneytoenterhispremisesandtake
inspectionofrelevantdocumentsandarticlesandtakecopiesthereoforremovethemfromthecustody.
Thenecessityforsuchanorderariseswherethereisagravedangerofrelevantdocumentsandinfringing
articlesbeingremovedordestroyedsothattheendsofjusticewillbedefeated.(AntonPillerv.
ManufacturingProcesses(1976)Ch.55(1976)R.P.C.719).SeealsoW.R.Cornish,IntellectualProperty,
3rdedn.,Delhi:UniversalLawPublishingCo.Pvt.Ltd.,2001,p.246.
53

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244
connectedtouseit;andthatwhenhebecameawareoftheexistenceandnatureofthe
plaintiffsrightinthegeographicalindication,heforthwithceasedtouseit. 54
(c)Deliveryupoftheinfringinglabelsandindications
Itisinthediscretionofthecourttoorderthedefendanttodeliverupinfringing
labelsandindicationsfordestructionorerasure.Thecourtbytakingrelevant
circumstancesintoaccountmayormaynotorderforsuchremedy.Alltheaforesaid
remediesarealsoavailableforpassingoffaction. 55Passingoffactionsareinitiated
againsttheinfringementofunregisteredgeographicalindications.
(ii)CriminalRemedies
Criminalremediesaremoreeffectivethancivilremediesbecausetheformercan
bedisposedoffquickly.Thependencyofacivilsuitdoesnotjustifythestayofcriminal
proceedinginwhichthesamequestionisinvolved.Sincecriminalproceedingsdirectly
strikesatthehonourandsocialstatusofaninfringer,insomecaseshecomesfora
settlementoutofcourttosavehisprestige.ChapterVIIIoftheActdealswithoffences
andpenaltiesforsuchoffences.
TheActcontainspenalprovisionforviolationofvariousprovisionsrelatingto
geographicalindicationsgivenbelow.
(i)
Falsifyingandfalselyapplyinggeographicalindicationstogoods. 56
(ii)
Sellinggoodstowhichfalsegeographicalindicationsisapplied. 57
(iii)Falselyrepresentingageographicalindicationasregistered. 58
Section67(3).
Section67(1).
56Section38and39.
57Section40.
58Section42.
54
55

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245
(iv)
Improperlydescribingaplaceofbusinessasconnectedwiththegeographical
indicationsregistry.
(v)
Falsificationofentriesintheregister.

Thepunishmentprescribedfortheaforesaidoffencesvariesformsixmonthsto
threeyearsimprisonmentandafineofnotlessthanrupeesfiftythousandbutmayextend
torupeestwolakh.Howeverthecourtforadequateandspecialreasonsinwritingmay
imposelesserpunishment.
TheAct59alsoprescribesforenhancedpenaltyforsecondorsubsequent
conviction.Thetermofimprisonmentinsuchcasesshallnotbelessthanoneyearbutit
mayextenduptothreeyearsandfineofnotlessthanonelakhrupeeswhichmayextend
uptotwolakhrupees.Thediscretionisvestedwiththecourtstoimposealesser
punishmentafterrecordinginthejudgmentadequateandspecialreasonsforawarding
suchlesserpunishment.Nocognizancewouldbetakenofanyconvictionmadebefore
thecommencementofthisAct.TheoffenceundertheActiscognizable.
ForfeitureofGoodsTheelementofmensreaisessentialforconviction.Ifmensreais
lacking,theaccusedmaybeacquitted.Thecourtmay,however,whereapersonis
convictedoracquittedbecauseoflackofmensrea,directthegovernmenttoforfeitall
goodsandthingsbymeansof,orinrelationtowhichtheoffencehasbeencommitted.
Thecourtmayeitherorderfortheforfeitedgoodstobedestroyedorotherwisedisposed
of.60
59
60

Section41.
Section46

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246
SearchandSeizuretheActempowerstheDeputySuperintendentofpolicetotake
cognizanceofgeographicalindicationsoffencesandmaysearchandseizethingsand
articlesinvolvedthereinwithoutwarrantifheissatisfiedthatanyoftheoffenceshas
beenorlikelytobecommittedandallthearticlessoseizedshallbeproducedbeforethe
JudicialMagistrateofthefirstclassorMetropolitanMagistrate,asthecasemaybeas
soonaspracticable.However,apoliceofficerbeforemakinganysuchsearchorseizure
shallobtaintheopinionoftheRegistraronthefactsinvolvedintheoffenceandshall
abidebysuchopinion.Apersonhavinganinterestinmayarticleseizedtofilean
applicationtotheJudicialMagistrateofthefirstclassortheMetropolitanMagistrate,as
thecasemaybe,forrestorationofsucharticleseized, 61
TheinterpretationofcertaintermsusedintheActisworthmentioningsinceit
helpsavoidingconfusionsandlackofunderstandingbothforjudiciaryandcommonman.
Theexpressionindicationhasbeendefinedinclusivelytoincludeanyname
geographicalorfigurativerepresentationoranycombinationofthemconveyingor
suggestingthegeographicaloriginofgoodstowhichitapplies.Thusindication
suggestsorconveystheoriginorsourceofthegoods.Itmaybeintheformofname(in
fullorabbreviation)orrepresentation(geographical)orfigurative)orcombinationof
them;fore.g.,thenameScotchindicatestheoriginofWhiskyasformScotland.
Darjeelingisageographicalrepresentationforindicatingtheoriginofteafrom
Darjeeling(India),thefigureofTajMahalonateabrand.
ThedefinitionofgeographicalindicationintheActisverycomprehensive.The
importantpointisthatagoodshouldalsohaveanidentifiablequality,reputationorother
characteristicsattributabletoitsgeographicalorigin.Incaseofmanufacturedgoods,
61

Section50.

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247

methodofproductionorprocesswouldbecomeanimportantparameter,whatitwould
meanatthegroundlevelisthatpeopleinterestedinobtaininggeographicalindication
mustestablishsuchfeaturesinadistinctivemannerwhichmaynotbeaneasytaskin
manysituationsandmayrequiretechnicalinputs.
MiscellaneousProvisions
Nosuitorotherlegalproceedingsshalllieagainstanypersoninrespectof
anythingwhichisingoodfaithdoneorintendedtobedoneinpursuanceofthisAct. 62
EverypersonappointedunderthisActshallbedeemedtobeapublicservant. 63Stayof
infringementproceedingscanbeordered.Astayofasuitforinfringementofa
geographicalindicationshallnotprecludethecourtfrommakinganinterlocutoryorder
duringtheperiodofstay.64
Incertaincases,specifiedthereintheapplicationfor
rectificationofregistershouldbemadetotheAppellateBoard.Whereageographical
indicationhasbeenappliedtothegoodsonsaleorincontractforsaleofgoods,thereis
animpliedwarrantythatthegeographicalindicationisagenuinegeographicalindication
andnotfalselyapplied.65TheRegistrarisempoweredwiththepowersofacivilcourt,
includingawardofreasonablecosts.TheRegistrarshallhavethepowertoreviewhis
owndecision.66WheretheRegistrarexercisesanydiscretionarypowervestedinhim
adversetoanapplicant,suchpersonshouldbegivenanopportunityofbeingheard. 67
TheevidencebeforetheRegistrarshouldbenormallyintheformofaffidavitonlyandin
additiontobemaytakeoralevidence.68
S.55oftheGIAct.
S.56oftheGIAct.
64S.57oftheGIAct.
65S.58oftheGIAct.
66S.60oftheGIAct.
67S.61oftheGIAct.
68S.62oftheGIAct.
62
63

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Incaseofdeathofapartytoaproceedingduringthecourseoftheproceeding,the
Registraronprooftohissatisfactionmayallowsubstitutionofsuccessorofthepartyor
mayallowtheproceedingtocontinuewiththesurvivingparties.69TheRegistraris
empoweredtoextendthetimefordoingofactsubjecttoconditions. 70IftheRegistraris
oftheopinionthattheapplicanthasdefaultedinprosecutionofhisapplication,hemay
bynoticerequiretheapplicanttoremedythedefectwithinaspecifiedtimeaftergiving
himanopportunityofbeingheard.Hemaytreattheapplicationasabandonedunlessthe
defaultisremediedwithinthetimespecifiedbyhim.
Asuitfortheinfringementofgeographicalindicationshallbeinstitutedonly
beforeadistrictcourt.Thereliefwhichacourtcouldgrantinanactionforinfringement
orpassingoffincludesinjunctions,damages,orattheoptionoftheplaintiffaccountof
profits.Thecourtmayalsoorderforthedeliveryupoftheinfringementlabelsand
indicationsfordestructionorerasure.Aninjunctionordermayincludeanexparte
injunctionoranyinterlocutoryorderincludingdiscoveryofdocument,preservingof
infringinggoods,restrainingthedefendantfromdisposingofordealingwithhisassets
adverselyaffectingtheplaintiffsabilitytorecoverdamagesorotherpecuniaryremedies
whichmaybefinallyawardedbycourt.Thecourtshallnotgrantreliefby,wayof
damages(otherthannominaldamages)onaccountofprofits:
(a)Ifthedefendantsatisfiesthecourtthathewasunawareandhadno
reasonablegroundforbelievingthatthegeographicalindicationofthe

plaintiffwasontheregister(incaseofsuitofpassingoffthegeographical
indicationwasinuse);andthat
69
70

S.63oftheGIAct.
S.64oftheGIAct.

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249
(b)Whenhebecameawareoftheexistenceandthenatureoftheplaintiffsright,
heforthwithceasedtousethegeographicalindication.
IneveryproceedingunderrectificationandcorrectionoftheRegisterauthorised
userofageographicalindicationhastobeimpleaded. 71
Acertifiedcopyofanyentryintheregisteroranydocumentofindexes
mentionedinsec.77andsealedwiththesealofGeographicalIndicationsRegistryshall
beadmittedinevidenceinallcourtsandinallproceedingswithoutfurtherproofor
productionoftheoriginal.AcertificateissuedbytheRegistrarastoanyentry,matteror
thing,heisauthorisedtodoshallbeprimafacieevidenceoftheentryhavingbeenmade
andofthecontentsthereof.72
TheRegistrarandotherofficersshallnotbecompelledto
producetheRegisteroranyotherdocumentinhiscustodyinanylegalproceedings,the
contentofwhichcanbeprovedbytheproductionofacertifiedcopyissuedunderthis
Act,orappearasawitnesstoprovethematterthereinrecordedunlessorderedbythe
courtforspecialreasons.73
TheCentralGovernmentmay,bynotification,requirethatgoodsofanyclass
specifiedinthenotificationwhicharemadeorproducedoutsideIndiaandimportedinto
Indiatoapplyanindicationofthecountryorplaceinwhichsuchgoodsaremadeor
producedwiththenameandaddressofthemanufactures. 74
TheAppellateBoardmaygrantacertificateofvalidityofaregistered
geographicalindicationortheauthoriseduserinanylegalproceedingsrelatingto
rectificationoftheregister,andif,inanysubsequentlegalproceedingsastoitsvalidity
S.68oftheGIAct.
S.69oftheGIAct.
73S.70oftheGIAct.
74S.71oftheGIAct.
71
72

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comesupthesaidregisteredproprietorortheauthoriseduser,asthecasemaybe,willbe
entitledtorecoverthefullcostchargesandexpensesasbetweenalegalpractitionerand
hisclient.75
Aperson,whoisalegalpractitioner,orapersonregisteredintheprescribed
mannerasageographicalinductionagent,orapersoninthesoleandregularemployment
oftheprincipalcanappearbeforetheRegistrardulyauthorised.
TheRegistrarshouldmaintain:
(a)anindexofregisteredgeographicalindications.
(b)Anindexofgeographicalindicationsinrespectofwhichapplicationsfor
registrationarepending.
(c)Anindexofthenamesoftheproprietorsofregisteredgeographical
indications,and
(d)Anindexofthenamesofauthorisedusers.76
Thedocumentssuchasregister,theindexesmentionedinsec.77andanyother

documentastheCentralGovernmentmayspecifybeopentopublicinspectionatthe
GeographicalIndicationsRegistry.Anypersonmay,onanapplicationtotheRegistrar
andonpaymentofsuchfeeasmaybeprescribed,obtainacertifiedcopyofanyentryin
theregisteroranydocument.77
TheCentralGovernmentshallplacebeforeboththeHousesofParliamentoncea
yearareportregardingtheexecutionbyorundertheRegistrar. 78
S.72oftheGIAct.
S.77oftheGIAct.
77S.78oftheGIAct.
78S.80oftheGIAct.
75
76

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7.4ChallengesandProblemsinthePostGIActRegime
TheGovernmentofIndiahasestablishedtheGeographicalIndicationsRegistry
withallIndiajurisdictionatChennai,wheretheGIscanberegistered.Authoritiesclaim
thatthisActhastwokeycharacteristics;(i)protectionofproducersagainstcounterfeiting
andmisleadingcommerce,and(ii)strikingofbalancebetweentrademarkandGI
protection.AccordingtothisAct,onceaGIisregistered,anypersonclaimingtobethe
producerofthegooddesignatedbytheregisteredGIcanfileanapplicationfor
registrationasanauthoriseduser.TheGIActistobeadministeredbytheController
GeneralofPatens,Designs,andTrademarkswhoistheRegistrarofGIs.The
registrationofageographicalindicationisforaperiodoftenyears.Renewalispossible
forfurtherperiodoftenyears.IfaregisteredGIisnotrenewed,itisliabletoberemoved
fromtheregister.
7.4.1RegistrationstatusofGIsinIndia
Around1500productsfromIndiahavereportedlybeenidentifiedashavingthe
potentialtogetregisteredasGIs.79TillJuly2012,178GIgotregisteredwiththeGIs
Registry80includingfewforeignGIs.81
79

Natarajan,V.(2008)IndianperspectiveofGIRegistration,presentationdeliveredintheRegional
ConferenceonIPRprotectionthroughGeographicalIndication,organisedbytheUNCTADIndia
programmeandtheTextilesCommittee,Hyderabad,India,34,June.
80SeeAnnexure.
81

ChampagnefromFrance,PiscofromPeru,NapavalleyfromUSA,ScotchWhiskyfromUK
ProsciuttodiParmafromItaly.

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Table1:categorywiseregisteredGIs.
Sl.No.
Category
No.of
RegisteredGIs.
1
Agriculture
44
2
Handicrafts
116
3

Manufactured
14
4
Foodstuffs
4
TotalGIsregistered178
Source:GIRegistryOffice,Chennai,asonJuly2012
AstrikingfeatureofIndianGIsisthevarietyofproductcategoriestowhichthey
belong.Theseincludetextiles,handicrafts,paintings,agriculturalproducts,horticultural
products,beverage,amongothers.ThisisinsharpcontrastwiththeEuropeanScenario,
whereGIspredominantlyrelatetoWineandSpirits,orotherfoodandagricultural
products.82Table1depictsthedistributionofregisteredGIsinIndiaaspercertainbroad
productcategories.Asmaybenotedfromthistable1outofthetotalof178(i.e.,
65.16%)registeredGIsareinthecategoryofhandicrafts(includinghandlooms,
TheEUhasinitspossessionsome4800registeredGIs,4200forWinesandSpiritsandanother600for
othercategories,mainlyfoodproducts(EuropeanCommission,2003),p.2.
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paintings,etc.).Notablyoftenthesearealsotheproductsthatarebasedonthetraditional
knowledge(TK)beingpassedonfromonegenerationoftheartisanscommunitytothe
next,clearlyreflectingIndiasrichheritageofTKinartsandcraftsofdiversegenres;and
thesignificantrolesthatGIscanpotentiallyplayinthecontextoftheseproducts.Itmay
alsobenotedfromtable1thatoutof178registeredGIs,44(i.e.,around25.58%)belong
toagriculture.Thepredominanceofartisanalandagriculturerelatedproductsamonghe
registeredGIs,whichtakentogethercomprise154outofthetotalof178(i.e.,89.53%)
clearlyindicatesthatGIshaveasignificantpotentialtofacilitateruraldevelopmentin
India.Itisinterestingtonoteintable1thatoutof178registeredGIsonly74(i.e.,
Around43.02%)belongtomanufacturedandfoodstuffs4(i.e.2.3%)
Table2:State/RegionwisedistributionofGIsinIndia
State/Region
NumberofRegisteredProducts
WestBengal
9
Kerala
20
TamilNadu
18
MadhyaPradesh
5
Maharashtra
7
Orissa
14
Karnataka
31
Rajasthan
9
AndhraPradesh
20

HimachalPradesh
4
Bihar
4
Assam
4
Goa
2
UttarPradesh
5
Gujarat
8
Chattisgarh
4
Nagaland
1
Jammu&Kashmir
5
Peru
1
France
2
USA
2
UK
1
Italy
1

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Portugal
2
Pondicherry
2
Punjab
1
Source:GIRegistryOffice,ChennaiasonJuly2012
Table2depictsthatoutofthetotal28statesand7unionterritoriesofIndia
productsformonly18statesand2unionterritorieshavebeenregisteredundertheGI
Act.Notevenasingleproducthasbeenregisteredfrom10statesandotherunion
territoriesofIndia.WhileKarnatakahasthemaximumproductsregistered(32)
interestinglyfewproductsfromoutsideIndiahasbeenregisteredseekingprotectionwith
theIndianGIRegistryOffice.

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ThetrendsandpatternsintheyearwisedistributionofGIsinIndiashowthat(see
table3),whiletherehasbeenanoverallincreaseinthenumberofregisteredGI

products,theincreasehasnotbeenconsistentoverthelast8years.Onlythree3products
wereregisteredinthefirstyear200405.ThenumberofproductsregisteredunderGI
recordedasignificantincreaseintheyear200506.Twentyfour(24)newproductswere
registeredinthefollowingyear200506butinthenextyear200607,only3new
productswereregistered.Theyear200708,31newproductswereregistered.Theyear
200809witnessedthemaximumnumberofnewproductsregistered45.However,inthe
followingyeartherewasasignificantdropinthenumbersofnewGIproduct
registration.Only14productswereregisteredintheyear200910.Intheyear201011,
29newproductswereregistered.Lastlyintheyear201112,29newproductswere
registered.
Table3:YearwiseDistributionofRegisteredGIsinIndia
Year
Agriculture
Handicrafts
ManufactureFoods
200405
1
2

200506
2
18
4

200607
2
1

200708
11
19
1

200809
10
33
1
1
200910
5
7
1
1
201011
8
15
4

2
201112
5
21
3

Total
44
116
14
4
GrandTotal:178

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GRAPH3:YearwiseDistributionofRegisteredGIsinIndia
7.4.2Issuesandconcerns
Thereareanumberofissuesandconcernsinthecontextofharnessingthe
potentialcommercialbenefitsoutofGIregistrationinIndia.Perhapsthebiggestconcern
isnearcompleteabsenceofaneffectivepostGImechanisminthecountry.Which
domesticregistrationofaGIisarelativelyeasytaskandtherehasbeensomeprogresson
thisaccountoverthelast9years,itisimportanttounderstandthatonlyregistrationof
goodspersedoesnotfulfiltheobjectivesoftheAct,unlessitisbackedbysound
enforcementmechanismboth,indomesticandexportmarkets.Infact,theenforcement
oftheActinothercountriesisamuchmorecomplicatedventureasthismayposea
varietyofconstraintsincludingtechnicalitiesinvolvedintheregistrationprocessin
variousforeigncountries,exorbitantexpensesinvolvedinappointingawatchdogagency
togetinformationonmisappropriation;andhugefinancialresourcesneededforfighting

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legalbattlesinforeignlands.83TheGovernmentsroleisvitalinthepostGImechanism
becausewithoutgovernmentsupport,mostproducergroupsdonothavethewherewithal
toeffectivelydefendandpromotetheirGIbrandinIndia,perhapsonlyinthecaseofone
goodi.e.DarjeelingTea,theTeaBoardhashadsomesuccessindefendingagainst
misappropriationinafewcountriesbecausetheyhavethefinancialcapacitytodoso.
ThoughtheActdefinesthecaseswhenaregisteredGIissaidtobeinfringed,itis
silentonthemechanismandprovisionstofightagainsttheinfringementandthisisan
areawherethegovernmentneedstoplaylargerrole.IntheopinionofRajnikant
Dwivedi,DirectorofHumanWelfareAssociation,anassociationbasedinVarnasi
workingwithhandloomweavers,benefitsofGIprotectionundertheGIActwillactually
dependonhoweffectiveisthepostGImechanism.BanaraseeSareeWeaversContinue
tobeadistressedlotidleloomshavenotbegunfunctioningandunscrupulouspracticesof
sellingimitationproductsinthenameofBanarseeSareehavenotbeencurbed.Mr.Anil
Singh,DirectorNeed,aLucknowbasedorganisationandalsoanapplicantinGI
registrationforLucknowChikancraftsaysthatGImayleavetheartisanscommunity
completelyhighanddryastheawarenesslevelonGI,themotbasicrecipeforsuccessof
anypolicy,isalarminglydismal.ThepostGImechanismmusthaveadequateprovision

forpromotionandcontinuousawarenessbuilding.ChikanCraft,beinganecofriendly,
gendersensitivecraft,hashugepotentialtoincreasethebargainingpowerofthe
producers;however,thispotentialhasnotbeentapped.Attemptshavebeenmadebythe
StateGovernmenttotapthispotentialbymergingGIpromotionwiththedepartmentof
tourism,promotingproducercompaniesandotherpromotionalmeasures.However,
KasturiDas(2006),ProtectionofGeographicalIndications:AnOverviewofSelectIssueswithSpecial
ReferencetoIndia,WorkingPaper:8;Centad,Delhi.
83

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theseeffortsremainrestrictedtoafewareaswherecivilsocietyisalive.Oneofthekey
concernsthatMr.Singhpointsoutisthatamajorityofproducersdonothavethecapacity
toreportandfightaninfringementcase.84
Atpresent,theactionrelatedtoGIappearsconcentratedonregistrationofGI
goodsandinmanycasesthestategovernmentsareactinginhaste.Theidentificationand
registrationishappeningwithoutadequateduediligence.Applicantsoftendonotassess
thecommercialstatus/prospectsofaGIproductinthedomesticandexportmarkets;the
potentialofitsGIstatusincontributingtoitsfuturegrowth;andthesocioeconomic
implicationsofitsGIprotectionforthecommunitiesinvolvedinitssupplychain.Asa
result,thelargerandtherealobjectivesoftheActarebypassed,oftenleadingto
frivolousandconsequentialregistration.Moreover,asGIsareacollectiverightsandnot
anindividualright,theregistrationprocessoffersanopportunityforcommunitylevel
sensitizationandawareness.However,inthehastetoregisterGIs,thisopportunityis
lost.TheawarenessandinvolvementintheregistrationprocessofevenGIgoodsremain
reducedtothelevelofafewselectedstakeholders.Thishasinsomecasesledto
seriouslyerroneousomissionsandcommission,defeatingthelargepurposeoftheGI
Act.85IncaseofMadhubanipaintingerrorhasbeenpointedout.Madhubanipaintingon
paperisregisteredasGIunderclass16whichimpliesthatMadhubanipaintingoncloth
isnotprotected.
AnotherlacunaisthatthedefinitionofproducerintheActdoesnotdistinguish
betweenarealproducer,retailerordealer.Asaresultofthisdiscrepancy,thebenefitsof
GeographicalIndicationsofIndia,PolicybriefOctober2010,aiaca.(AllIndiaArtisansandCraftworks
WelfareAssociation),p.8.
85Forinstance,themapsubmittedwhileapplyingforGIregistrationofBahPrint(AlreadyaregisteredGI)
excludedsomeareaswhereBaghprintinghasexistedfordecades.(PointedbyMr.ChinmayaMishraina
PlanningCommissionMeeting).
84

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theActmaynotpercolatedowntotherealproducer.Variouseconomicallypowerful
intermediariesmaystillcontinuetheircontrolovermarketsandtherealproducersmay
stillbedependentontheseintermediariesformarketaccess.EvenifGIprotectionwould
yieldfinancialbenefits,insuchascenario,firmswithsuperiorbargainingpositions
(locatedontheupperstreamofthesupplychain)mayendupappropriatinga
disproportionateshareoftheeconomicvaluegeneratedfromsecuringprotection. 86
7.5Conclusion
TheGIAct,whichcameintoforce,alongwiththeGIRules,witheffectfrom15
September2003,hasbeeninstrumentalintheextensionofGIstatustomanygoodsso
far.ThecentralgovernmenthasestablishedtheGeographicalIndicationsRegistrywith
allIndiajurisdiction,atChennai,whererightholderscanregistertheirGI.Unlike

TRIPS,theGIActdoesnotrestrictitsspecialprotectiontowinesandspiritsalone.The
centralgovernmenthasdiscretiontodecidewhichproductsshouldbeaccordedhigher
levelsofprotection.Thisapproachhasdeliberatelybeentakenbythedraftersofthe
IndianActwiththeaimofprovidingstringentprotectionasguaranteedundertheTRIPS
AgreementtoGIofIndianorigin.However,otherWTOmembersarenotobligatedto
ensureArticle23typeprotectiontoallIndianGI,therebyleavingroomfortheir
misappropriationintheinternationalarena.RegistrationofGIisnotcompulsoryinIndia.
Ifregistered,itwillaffordbetterlegalprotectiontofacilitateanactionforinfringement.
OnceaGIisregisteredinIndia,itbecomesrelativelyeasiertoseekprotectioninother
countries,particularlythemembercountriesofWTO.