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Union Minister Suresh Prabhu today said it is "extremely important" to protect India's intellectual property rights (IPRs) as the country now stands at the forefront of innovation.
At a meeting here, the commerce and industry minister also reviewed the initiatives taken by the government on strengthening India's intellectual property rights regime.
"India is now at the forefront of innovation and developing new ideas. In such scenario, protection of IPRs becomes extremely important," Prabhu said.
Secretary in the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) Ramesh Abhishek provided the details of how recent initiatives by the Centre are transforming the IP landscape in India.
The government has been working relentlessly to streamline IP processes and modernisation of IP offices through various steps, according to an official statement.
These are comprehensive e-filing facilities made available for patents and trademarks, auto-allotment of patent applications to ensure uniformity and utilisation of the specialised expertise of all examiners and controllers and by auto generation of trademark certificates, it said.
The examination of patent applications has increased over three times in the last six months compared to the same period last year.
"To reduce the pendency, 458 patent and 59 trademark examiners have been appointed in addition to the existing manpower. Pendency in Patent examination is targeted to be brought down from the present 7 years to 18 months by 2019," said the Commerce Ministry statement.
Moreover, it said, the pendency of trademark applications at the examination stage has been reduced drastically - the time taken for examination has been brought down from 13 months to less than one month.
On this occasion, the minister also launched the official website of Cell for IPR Promotion and Management (CIPAM) which is a professional body created under the DIPP for focused action on issues related to IPRs and smooth implementation of the objectives of the National IPR Policy adopted in May 2016.
The website will provide regular updates on the latest IP trends statistics on applications filed, examined, grants and disposal for various IPRs. It would provide information on the various initiatives being taken by the Government to strengthen the IPR regime in the country.