Geographical Indication

Geographical indications have faced a tumultuous birth: they have been the source of transnational disputes and claims of illegal use, with only codification of geographical indication law and international treaties bringing quietus.

Geographical Indications or GIs protect communities that have perfected over time the manufacture of arts and products imbibing unique attributes or characteristics owing to geographical origin. A cutaway legislation that recognizes intellectual property rights of a community instead of individual producers, the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999 addresses protection of articles by geographic territory of origin, including agricultural and traditional food preparations, textiles and handicrafts, and even architectural design.

Though registration is not mandated, claims cannot be brought for infringement of unregistered GIs. Among potential benefits of registering GIs is the permissibility of associations or conglomerations of producers to adopt collective and certification marks to accentuate the distinctiveness of their products.

The Firm has a body of work in the field of GIs having represented a range of producers and associations, domestic and foreign, seeking to protect and or defend their GIs before courts and tribunals.