70,000 patent applications in the pipeline for process: Controller General of Patents

It may take at least three to four years to grant a patent under the Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Act in India for patent offices as they need more examiners.

Controller General of Patents, Design and Trade Marks and Geographical Indications Registry, P. H. Kurien informed that about 70,000 patent application examinations were in the pipeline for process and examination.

Speaking at the Confederation of Indian Industry's (CII) 7th IP summit here, Mr. Kurian said there was a need for at least 260 people in patent offices to examine applications and various other processes. “At present we have only 150 officers but it is also not possible to increase the manpower overnight,” he said adding that the problem was being addressed and might be resolved by 2012-13.

The capacity of the current set up was to process 15,000 applications annually and 70,000 were in pipeline and process of examination. He also informed that since 2005, about 13,000 patents pertaining to chemicals and pharmaceuticals alone had been issued. The increased growth of patent filing in India was due to timely amendments of the Patents Act of 1970. Since 1995 after India signed the WTO, there were sweeping changes in the IP administration and legislation culminating in the introduction of the product patent regime in 2005.

The law enforcement on piracy in Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Kerala is stricter. “The law is even stricter than other developed countries. In the U.S., only Federal Police is empowered to take action in piracy related cases but in India the police is empowered to not only take action but also preventive detections in piracy cases,'' he said.

Keywords: IPRpatent officesCII

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