The tags help identify goods — originating from a definite territory — with special characteristics

It seems that the Election Commission’s model code of conduct has not spared even a quasi-judicial body such as the Geographical Indications (GI) Registry. The Registry has put on hold the decision to grant registration to products such as Dharmavaram handloom silk sari, Firozabad glass, Kannauj perfume, Moradabad metal craft and Saharanpur woodcraft.

A geographical indication (GI) tag is used to identify goods with special characteristics and originating from a definite territory. The GI tag also confers legal protection to the products in India.Sources in the GI Registry said: “These producers from Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Manipur applied for registrations last year. After accepting applications from them, we published them in our journal on November 28 and 29 last year. We have not received any opposition in mandatory period of three months. Even the tough the mandatory period was complete on March 29, we are not able to proceed further for granting GI registration as community at large involved in the claims when the Model Code of Conduct is in force.”

M.S. Bharath, Secretary of Intellectual Property Association of South India told The Hindu: “The statutory period to oppose the GI claims appears to have expired recently. None of us are aware presently as to any Model of Code of Conduct as being the reason for delay in grant of registration certificates to the GI which have gone unopposed. Following the practice of Trademark, Patent and Designs offices, the GI office could send the registration certificates to the counsels on record instead of sending it to the applicant associations or societies directly.”

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