- Registrar of Geographical Indications, Government of India has accorded a GI tag to ‘Sirsi Supari’. It is an arecanut cultivated in Yellapura, Siddapura and Sirsi taluks of Karnataka. The Totagars’ Cooperative Sale Society (TSS) Ltd, a Sirsi-based agri-cooperative, is the registered proprietor of the GI ‘Sirsi Supari’.
- Recently, Erode turmeric (Tamil Nadu) and Marayur jaggery (Kerala) have also received GI tags.
- Geographical Indications (GI) is an intellectual property right (IPR). GI is a status accorded to a good which is unique to a particular region or area, and is originated from there.
- In India, the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999, along with the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Rules, 2002 govern GI registrations and goods. These laws were introduced after the ratification of the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).
- Good in the categories of a) Agricultural products (e.g. Nagpur Orange), b) foodstuffs (e.g. Joynagar Moa), c) handicrafts (e.g. Agates of Cambay), d) textile (e.g. Kullu Shawl), e) natural products (e.g. Makrana Marble) and f) manufactured products (e.g. Kannauj Perfume) come under the ambit of GI Tags. Darjeeling Tea is the first good to receive a GI Tag in India.
- The ‘Controller-General of Patents, Designs and Trade Marks’ appointed under the Trade Marks Act, 1999 is the Registrar of Geographical Indications. It directs and supervises the functioning of the Geographical Indications Registry (GIR). GIR facilitates the registration of GIs.
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