IPR POLICY: A SUMMARY

The vision behind the IPR policy is ‘Create India, Innovate India’ and to integrate IP as a policy and strategic tool at national level where the key focus has been on the following:

  • to mobilize the large scientific talent pool of the country
  • to enhance innovation in areas of national importance.

It plans to create IP awareness by identifying unprotected IPRs and educating institutes, colleges, school, judiciary in relation to the importance of IPR as an economic tool for development.  It also aims to contribute towards Human Capital development by developing a pool of IPR professionals and experts in the area of policy.

The policy aims to generate more of IPR. The steps proposed for the same are as follows:

  • Improving the IPR output of national research labs, university, technology, institutes;
  • Encouraging and benefitting MSME inventors, startups, grass root innovators, etc.
  • Enhancing the national patents and design filings
  • Incentivizing and promoting R&D by providing tax rebates, financial support and creation of an effective and simple loan guarantee scheme.
  • Offering special incentives for generation of IPR and green technology and manufacture of energy efficient equipment; agriculture and pisciculture sector, GI registration.
  • Promoting innovation in healthcare; environmental protection, biotechnology, nanotechnology, ICT.

It proposes to build the legal and legislative framework by:

  • Providing an effective and stable legal frame work for protection and promotion of IPR while being committed to public health.
  • Amending the Indian Cinematography Act to provide penal provisions for illegal duplication.
  • examining the following for policy development:

it provides for an inter play of IP with other legislations such as

  • Competition Law and policy,
  • Patents and biodiversity;

Further, it provides for protection of trade secrets and transfer of technology; know-how and licensing relating to SEPs on FRAND terms.

It also proposes the following measures towards a better administration and management;

  • Department of Industrial policy and promotion (DIPP) to handle administration of Copyright Act and Semiconductor Integrated Circuits Layout –Design Act.
  • Creation of Cell for IPR Promotion and Management (CIPAM) to facilitate promotion, creation and commercialization of IP assets.
  • To enhance national, human and institutional capacity to encourage development of IP
  • Establish coordination of National Biodiversity Authority with the Patent Office
  • Standardize procedure in examination of application while exploring the possibility of expedited examination of patent applications to promote manufacturing in India.
  • Adopt best practice with regard to filing and docketing while fixing and adhering to time lines for grant and registration of opposition matters.
  • Examine and joining of Centralized Access For Search (CAS) and Digital Access Services (DAS)

It also envisages to contribute towards enforcement and adjudication by way of following:

  • To strengthen the enforcement mechanism
  • Establishment of IP cells for curbing IP offences
  • Facilitate effective adjudication of IP disputes through commercial court and promote ADR in the resolution of IP.

For commercialization of IP, the following ways have been suggested by the policy:

  • Creation of common platform to bring together investors, funding institute and IP creators.
  • Consolidation of IP created by different departments funded by the Government (IP Audit)
  • Stimulate commercialization of public funded research.
  • Examine availability of SEP’s on FRAND terms
  • Devise suitable contractual and licensing guidelines for commercialization of IPR promoting patent pooling and cross licensing.
  • Enhance access to affordable medicines and healthcare solution by developing cross sector partnership, promoting novel licensing model, developing novel technology platforms.
  • Providing timely manufacturing and marketing regulatory approvals.

The National IPR policy seems to travel beyond the mandate at least in the following respects:

  • Obliquely interfering in the health regulatory mechanism for approval of drugs without recognizing patent linkage.
  • Evolving guidelines for technology transfer and licensing of SEP on FRAND terms
  • Creating a linkage between NBA and Patent Law while no such linkage exists
  • No mention of providing autonomy to the Intellectual Property Appellate Board
  • Utility model legislation needs to be developed to look at grass root innovations
  • No incentives for investing in research in the area of developing affordable drugs in neglected sectors like
    • Expedited grants,
    • quick marketing,
    • approvals
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