Category Archives: Geographical Indication

Geographical Indication

Happy Feet and Not-so-Happy Hands: Meaning of GI for Kolhapuri Chappals


We’re pleased to bring to you a guest post by Dr. Sunanda Bharti on the GI tag for Kolhapuri chappals. Dr. Sunanda is an Assistant Professor in Law at Delhi University. She has written two guest posts for us in the past as well, which can be viewed here, here and here. Happy Feet and Not-so-Happy Hands: Meaning of GI for Kolhapuri chappals Dr. Sunanda Bharati Introduction Though GI in favour of Kolhapuri was registered in December 2018 itself, the news…


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Geographical Indication

Issues Pertaining to Geographical Indications in the Tobacco Plain Packaging Case before the WTO (Part II)


In Part I of this post, I had discussed the Panel’s findings on Article 22(b) of TRIPS in the Tobacco Plain Packaging case. In Part II, I will examine the second GI issue, on detriment to pre-existing rights in geographical indications. Article 24.3: Pre-Existing Rights in GIs Prior to the coming into force of TRIPS, different jurisdictions protected geographical indications in different ways. While in some jurisdictions GIs were protected under trademark law, others relied on common law doctrines to…


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Geographical Indication

Issues Pertaining to Geographical Indications in the Tobacco Plain Packaging Case before the WTO (Part I)


Recently, I had the opportunity to work on the Panel Report in the Tobacco Plain Packaging case at the WTO. It brought forth several interesting questions on the intersection between health, policy-making, trade and intellectual property rights. It also places TRIPS obligations relating to trademark and GIs under the scanner, with question marks raised over whether the interpretation given by the Panel supports a good faith interpretation of the treaty. While much has been written about the issues pertaining to…


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Geographical Indication Trademark

An Update on the Tobacco Plain Packaging Case at the WTO


A little over a year ago, a Panel formed under the auspices of the World Trade Organisation published a report that found Tobacco Plain Packaging Measures (the ‘TPP Measures’) rolled out in Australia to be compliant with obligations under international trade agreements. This decision was hailed as a victory against the tobacco lobby, which has rallied against TPP Measures at several levels, including domestic courts and international investment tribunals. However, this decision has also attracted plenty of criticism (see here…


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Geographical Indication

The Need to Look Beyond Wines and Spirits: GI Law in India and the Woes of Muga Silk


We’re pleased to bring to you a guest post by Jupi Gogoi. Jupi is an Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Law, University of Delhi. She was formerly associated with the Indian Law Institute, New Delhi. The Need to Look Beyond Wines and Spirits: GI Law in India and the Woes of Muga Silk Jupi Gogoi Muga is a silk variety endemic to the state of Assam. Attires made of Muga Silk are reflection of the culture and heritage of…


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Geographical Indication Others

Delhi HC Clarifies the Ambit of the Seeds Act in Relation to GIs


Can the Seeds Act govern GIs?-The Delhi HC, in an interesting order issued last month, dealt with this question in some detail. The factual matrix is simple here; The Ministry of Agriculture had, through an Office Memorandum (OM), set forth the characteristics of “Basmati” rice variety. They had further stated through another OM that in order to ensure the linkage between the variety and the GI, only such Basmati varieties which were  grown in Indo-Gangetic area would come under the…


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Geographical Indication Trademark

Certification Trade Marks and GI versus ‘Regular’ Trade Marks: The Calcutta High Court Ruling in Tea Board v. ITC


We’re pleased to bring to you a guest post by Eashan Ghosh on the recent decision of the Calcutta High Court in the GI and Certification TM infringement case filed by the Tea Board of India against ITC for use of ‘Darjeeling’ as part of the name of a refreshment lounge (‘Darjeeling Lounge’) in one of its hotels. Eashan has been in practice as an intellectual property advocate and consultant in New Delhi since 2011, and teaches a seminar on intellectual…


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Geographical Indication Trademark

Australia’s Big Win at the WTO: Plain Packaging of Tobacco Likely to Pick Up!


In 2012, Australia was the first country to adopt plain packaging measures for tobacco products. Several countries such as France, Ireland, UK etc. followed suit and other countries such as India have initiated legislative processes for introduction of such measures. Plain packaging laws and measures generally impose requirements of removal of logos, minimal branding and colouring, and warning signs. These laws have attracted a lot of debate in recent times since opponents of these laws (mainly tobacco producers) claim that…


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Geographical Indication

GIs for Food Stuffs: IP or RecIPe?


We are pleased to bring to you a guest post by Ms. Latha Nair. Latha is a partner with the IP boutique K&S Partners, a pioneering firm in the area of GI practice. In this brilliant post, she analyses the propriety of registering every regional food stuff as a geographical indication (GI). Here’s a ‘taste’ of her post: “Over the decades, every traditional regional recipe has travelled the length and breadth of the country, providing gustatory comfort to its natives…


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Geographical Indication

SpicyIP Fellowship 2018-19: Basmati Wars – Peril for Madhya Pradesh and GI Issue with Hybrids of Basmati


We are pleased to bring to you a guest post by our Fellowship applicant, Rishabh Mohnot. Rishabh is a 3rd year student at National University of Juridical Sciences (NUJS), Kolkata. This is his first submission for the Fellowship. Rishabh had also written a post for us last year during his internship. Basmati Wars: Peril for Madhya Pradesh and GI Issue with Hybrids of Basmati Rishabh Mohnot On March 15, 2018, the Geographical Indications (GI) Registry passed an order rejecting Madhya…


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