[Answered] What do you understand by intellectual property rights? Discuss how India should manage intellectual property rights issues in India?

Demand of the question
Introduction. What are intellectual property rights?
Body. IPR policy and how India should manage IPR?
Conclusion. Way forward.

Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) are legal rights over intangible creations, innovation and discovery in the industrial, scientific, literary and artistic fields. The most well-known types are copyrights, patents, trademarks, and trade secrets. The main purpose of intellectual property law is to encourage the creation of a wide variety of intellectual goods.

Aims of IPR Policy in India:

  1. The National IPR Policy aims to create and exploit synergies between all forms of intellectual property (IP), concerned statutes and agencies.
  2. It aims to incorporate and adapt global best practices to the Indian scenario.
  3. It aim to develop strong and effective IPR laws, which balance the interests of rights owners with larger public interest.
  4. It also focus on modernising and strengthening service-oriented IPR administration.
  5. It aim to strengthen the enforcement and adjudicatory mechanisms for combating IPR infringements.
  6. It strive to strengthen and expand human resources, institutions and capacities for teaching, training, research and skill building in IPRs.
  7. The Policy aims to push IPRs as a marketable financial asset, promote innovation and entrepreneurship, while protecting public interest.
  8. Special thrust is on awareness generation and effective enforcement of IPRs, besides encouragement of IP commercialisation through various incentives.

Issues with the current policy:

  1. Policy could be a deterrent to innovation by restricting knowledge flow.
  2. IPR policy is driven by the protecting owner’s rights. This may jeopardise public interest.
  3. While IP could accelerate innovation in certain technologies it in turn impedes in others through monopoly over certain creations.
  4. Policy recommends scientist and professors to convert all their discoveries. This may lead to rush and could impact creativity.

How India should manage intellectual property rights?

  1. The government should partner with industry and academics to identify various intellectual property rights issues.
  2. Clear incentives should be provided to firms to invest in research and development through safeguarding their property and innovation.
  3. Effective regulatory regimes should be encouraged to support intellectual property and the longer term investments of firms.
  4. Aim should be to develop a knowledge-led economy where innovation and IP should stimulate productivity, push economic growth.
  5. For innovation to thrive, the government policies must support IP and a sound legal and regulatory framework to be able to accommodate an efficient IP system.
  6. Public awareness should be created about the economic, social and cultural benefits of IPRs among all sections of society.
  7. Fostering an environment where innovation flourishes and a knowledge economy is built, is the key idea. Hence, the policy should have a balance.
  8. It should encourage patenting and at the same time ensure that patentability of a product/process does not deter further innovation and progress.
  9. It needs to safeguard its patents, copyrights and traditional knowledge by ensuring easy IPR rules.

IPR are important to protect creators right and provide incentives which encourage innovation, which in turn enhances the quality of human life. The promotion and protection of intellectual property spurs economic growth, creates new jobs and industries, and enhances the quality and enjoyment of life. Thus IPR rules is important not only for individual or an organisation but for whole humanity. What is needed is balance between profits of the organisation and needs of the poor through IPR for limited time.

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