National IPR Policy, 2016 serves as a guide on the Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) regime in India that shall be reviewed once in 5 years by the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DIPP), which was formulated after an intensive stakeholder meeting with nearly 300 organizations and individuals by IP think tanks, which the Government then approved of India on 12th May 2016.

Vision Statement for IPR Policy

An India where innovation and creativity are accelerated by Intellectual Property (IP) will benefit the society and where IP will encourage and foster advancements in science and technology, arts & culture, traditional knowledge, and biodiversity resources. Where learning is the key accelerator of knowledge and development owned is transformed into knowledge shared.

Mission Statement for IPR Policy

The mission of the IPR Policy is to stimulate a dynamic, balanced, and vibrant IPR system in India that will help in accelerating & fostering innovation and creativity, thereby promoting entrepreneurship, access to healthcare, environmental protection, encouraging socio-economic and cultural developments, etc.

The Policy comprises seven key areas, including actionable steps to be taken and implemented by appropriate governments, departments, industries, and stakeholders wherein DIPP shall be the overall coordinator. The key areas are as follows: -

1. IPR Awareness: Outreach and Promotion

The first objective talks about creating public awareness about the social, economic, and cultural benefits of IPRs. It should be achieved through roadshows and campaigns. IPR should be incorporated in the syllabus and course material for school and higher education levels. Distance learning IPR courses should also be introduced.

2. Generation of IPRs

Innovation and creativeness would be encouraged to foster the generation of IPRs, leading to the age of IPs protected through IPRs. Research and Development (R&D) as well as domestic filing of patents to be enabled.

3. Legal and Legislative Framework

To have an effective and strong IPR regime that will balance IP owners’ interests with more extensive public interests. Consultation with the stakeholders to enhance, amend and review existing IP laws and regulations in India is a must. Constant engagement constructively in negotiating with international and national agreements and treaties. To prevent traditional knowledge from being misused by multinational corporations, Traditional Knowledge Digital Library (TKDL) to strengthened with increased ambit.

4. Administration and Management

This objective focuses on enhancing and modernizing the service-oriented IPR administration via Augmented human resources after analyzing estimated workload, speedy disposal of case backlogs, and adopting global protection schemes and productivity parameters. Improving infrastructure, modernizing IP offices also comes under this objective.

5. Commercialization of IPRs’

To get value from the IPRs, commercialization of IP is vital, such as marketing Indian IPR based products and services, including Geographical Indications, Patents, and other services to a global audience and collaborating and assisting smaller firms to protect their IPs nationally as well as internationally. Promoting R&D in all sectors is of primary focus; Timely approval for marketing drugs and access to affordable health care and medicines.

6. Enforcement and Adjudication

This objective focuses on enhancing the enforcement mechanism for combating IPR infringements, including IP modules for the bar and the bench. Specialized courts to deal specifically with IP disputes. Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) to be encouraged for settlement of IP disputes.

7. Human Capital Development

To enhance and expand capacities of teaching research, institutions, and skill-building in IPRs. To encourage women creators, entrepreneurs, innovators, practitioners, and trainers. They are promoting new IP schemes and strategies in research, government departments, and technical institutions. Lastly, IP cells are to be created in Ministries, governments, industries, and academic institutions.

Indian National Intellectual Property Rights Policy
By Divyansh Sehgal, Sanrachana