An invention can be the subject of a number of patent applications worldwide, in a variety of languages. Patent equivalents are a list of similar patent documents; with the same priority dates from throughout the world (for example see here). Searching for Indian patent equivalents is a herculean task! I’ve always wondered why Indian patents never featured in free online databases like WIPO’s Patentscope or EPO’s Espacenet. Thankfully that’s going to change. As reported by Business standard, Indian patents will soon be a part of European patent office huge database, which currently covers patent information of 90 countries!
Indian patent office website lacks a user friendly interface and iterative search features (my opinion); thus locating corresponding Indian patent equivalent is a challenging task. However if the EPO signs the deal with the Indian patent office, Indian patents will soon be visible on the International map. This increased visibility would mean increased technology transfer and licensing opportunities for India. This deal might also have significant ramifications in the biologic patent information arena, where searching and identifying patents is crucial (due to absence of orange book).