'Vanity GIs': India's Legislation on Geographical Indications and the Missing Regulatory Framework
22 Pages Posted: 22 Oct 2016
Date Written: October 20, 2016
This chapter focuses on the post-registration quality-control regulatory measures for GIs in India. First, it identifies the problem involving the interface between GIs as collective intellectual property (IP) rights and their linkages with quality and product/process standards. Second, it briefly discusses the experiences of two comparative jurisdictions — the United States (U.S.) and the European Union (EU) — regarding the linkages between the GIs framework and the corresponding regulatory framework for quality control. Third, the chapter explores the missing regulatory framework in India and discusses the limitations of Indian GIs law in this regard. A few short case-studies are presented to highlight the various combinations of statutory and self-voluntary mechanisms associated with different GI products in India. The objective is to show how different mechanisms for quality control have led to either preservation or dilution of the collective reputation of GIs. This chapter concludes by elaborating on the reasons for failure of the Indian GIs regime on issues of quality control and suggests that decentralized mechanisms for different GIs, which are nevertheless governed by a uniform statutory framework, are the way forward to restore the credibility of many GIs and promote a successful system of GI protection in India.
Keywords: Geographical Indications, Darjeeling Tea, Banarasi Saree, GIs India, GI Quality
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