India: IP Environment In India - Insight Of Opportunities And Threats

India is believed to have an incredible potential to become one of the world's leading markets and hub for the innovation, research and development. Intellectual property industry is assessed to have a huge growth potential in the current Indian and Global context. Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) unarguably are emerging as a strategic business tool for any business organization to enhance its competitiveness. India has proven its endurance by not only withstanding the global economic slowdown but also emerged as one of the fastest growing economy across the globe. Over the last few years, with slogans like "Creative India: Innovative India"–"Make in India" the Government of India has been trying to position itself to be a pro-IP, knowledge-driven economy capable of competing with developed and developing countries in protecting and promoting innovation and other IPR in an array of industries. Lately, we have seen a paradigm shift towards high quality and value added ideas and innovations. Intellectual Property provides exclusive rights to the inventors or the manufacturer of the respective IP Property which in turns enables them to reap out the commercial benefits from the innovative idea or design. IPR provides some kind of granted monopoly and this is the main cause that inspires innovators to come up with innovations and new ideas. IPR also provides an added advantage of safety from the competitors.

Comprehending that invention is the engine for the growth of affluence and national competitiveness in the 21st century; The President of India has declared 2010 as the 'Decade of Innovation'. Declaration of 2010-2020 as the innovation decade can be seen as a desperate attempt towards making the Indian IP environment more healthy and supportive towards the indigenous as well as the international innovators. National Innovation Council (NInC) has been setup under the Chairmanship of Mr. Sam Pitroda, He will act as an adviser to the PM to discuss, to analyze and to help implement strategies for inclusive innovation in India and prepare a Roadmap for Innovation 2010-20201. Government of India has recently approved the new IPR policy 2016 on May 13, 2016, which targets to encourage escalate awareness about and administer Intellectual Property in India. IP offices across the country are being transformed to increase the efficiency in processing the applications. Patent offices have been directed to ensure uniformity and consistency in the examination of applications. A Roadmap to increase the bilateral cooperation at global level and raising the public awareness level has been set up. Mass recruitment of Patent and trademark examiners are planned to take care of the ever increasing backlogs. Startups have a very inadequate possessions and manpower and can sustain in the cut throat competition only through continuous growth and development oriented innovations. For them the union Government of India has started a facility of faster allocation of patents under the "Tatkal" scheme. Startups are also facilitated with the reduced patent examination fee. These facilities are also available to the innovators who file their patents first in India. The new provisions introduced in the Patents Rules by way of 2016 amendments seek to grant patent within two and a half years and within one and a half year by March 2018 which otherwise used to take about five to seven years. To clear the backlogs the government of India has recruited large number of Examiners in each of the technological department at the Patent Office.. Further, by

2016 amendment, the official fee for withdrawing an application for patent has been waived off and now the applicant can also claim a refund of 90% of examination fee in case the withdrawn application is not examined at the Patent Office. Accordingly, applicants are encouraged to withdraw application for which the applicant is "not interested" in acquiring a patent, thereby, automatically reducing the Examiner's load to some extent.

The Indian Government acknowledges that even after taking some major steps towards improving the overall IPR environment in the country, we still need to strike a balance in the IPR regime, its protection and effective promotion.. For instance, it will be obligatory for the administration to provide effect to the full essence and scope of the National IPR Policy, which endorses a host of methods including the periodic review and changes to the existing IPR legal and regulatory framework and creating a credible IPR enforcement system. Indian IP laws have many provisions for administrative, civil and criminal remedies for infringement of the IPR; however ineffective enforcement is one of the biggest problems that inhibit the growth of IP industry in the country

The Index which is created by the US Chamber of Commerce: Global Intellectual Property Center (GIPC) has around 30 principles critical to innovation including patent, copyright and trademark protections, enforcement, and engagement in international treaties. According to the report, the reason India scoring low rank was nonalignment with the international best practices in IPR. It also mentioned that India needs to provide ample protection from online piracy and shall strive to have proper law enforcement. The use of compulsory licensing, which is governments permission to allowing entities to manufacture, use, sell or import a patented invention without the permission of patentee, for the commercial and non-emergency situations has been a topic of discussion at various platforms.

Key Areas of Strength as per GIPC3

  • The government of India continued to make positive statements during 2015 on the need to introduce a strong IP environment.
  • Ex officio powers introduced in 2007 for the Deputy and Assistant Commissioners of Customs.
  • Key Areas of Improvement suggested as per GIPC3
  • Patentability requirements shall be made in line with that of the international standards.
  • Regulatory data protection and patent term restoration should be made available.
  • History of use of compulsory licensing for commercial and non-emergency situations shall be discouraged.
  • Steps should be taken towards effective application and enforcement of civil remedies and criminal penalties against patent infringements.

Taking positive cues out of the various reports, the Union Government has implemented major steps in the direction of enabling the law enforcement agencies with recourses against infringement of Patents, Trademarks and Copyrights. Government of India has launched a new mission where the Indian Police personals will be equipped with special knowledge toolkit to identify and prosecute the IPR violations. The toolkit is jointly developed by Cell for IPR Promotion and Management (CIPAM) and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI). The CIPAM has taken all the essential actions to build up a healthy IP environment in the country by creating various awareness programmes and seminars. To further strengthen the law

enforcement and awareness of the state police CIPAM has already organized seven batches of training for the police officials in Andhra Pradesh. Also a three day training programme was arranged for the Police Officials in the state of Uttar Pradesh. CIPAM has also directed all the state police and judicial academies to introduce and take up training on enforcement of intellectual property rights. CIPAM is actively facilitating international engagements in the field of intellectual property rights protection. Two MoUs on IPR were recently signed with UK and Singapore. India-USA Workshop on Protection of Trade Secrets was successfully organized by CIPAM to discuss various aspects related to Trade Secrets and its impact on Industry. 2


We now have to understand that creating innovation is of no use if we cannot assure the patent owner if the patent rights are protected by the State through adequate law enforcement. Today, India is on its way of adopting a balanced approach towards creating a stimulus for the betterment of the IPR industry as a whole. Recent developments in India, be it the New IPR policy or the initiatives taken by the National Innovation Council (NInC) or providing an effective toolkit in the form of checklist that will act as a reckoner for the police to deal with IP crimes or encouragement to innovators in terms of speedy patent examination in case they file first in India, all are a part of much needed attempt to improve the overall security of IPR and encouragement to create more IP in the country. While the latest Intellectual Property index results ranking India as one of the lagging end countries is a setback for us, however, the efforts undertaken by the

Indian Government in recent past would definitely improve the IPR protection in the country. Further, the Courts and the Government are indeed acting cautiously over the recommendations and identifying areas that need improvements while also continuing with policies like compulsory licensing where it really matters for example in the cases of life saving drugs. India being a developing country with second largest population needs to carefully identify exact areas to act upon and strike an ever-evasive balance between commercial rights/recommendations on IPR protection while not succumbing to international pressure and give away the socialist approach towards the public at large.




The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

In association with
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
Email Address
Company Name
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Media & IT
 Real Estate
 Wealth Mgt
Asia Pacific
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
United States
Worldwide Updates
Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:
  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.
  • Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.
    If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here
    If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq you may opt out by clicking here

    Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

    Use of

    You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.


    Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

    The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.


    Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

    • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
    • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
    • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

    Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

    Information Collection and Use

    We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

    We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

    Mondaq News Alerts

    In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.


    A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

    Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

    Log Files

    We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.


    This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

    Surveys & Contests

    From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.


    If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.


    From time to time Mondaq may send you emails promoting Mondaq services including new services. You may opt out of receiving such emails by clicking below.

    *** If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of services offered by Mondaq you may opt out by clicking here .


    This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to

    Correcting/Updating Personal Information

    If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to

    Notification of Changes

    If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

    How to contact Mondaq

    You can contact us with comments or queries at

    If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.

    By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions