A new thread was added to the Indo-Pak tussle over a patent for Pashmina. At loggerheads for a while over a Geographical Indication (GI) tag for the prized wool, Pakistan said it is “open to a joint GI tag”, shared by both sides of Kashmir. India said this is possible only if Pakistan’s Pashmina is the same quality for which it has sought a patent.
If Pashmina gets the patent — Kashmir Pashmina — it will join the league of Darjeeling tea, Alphonso mango, Assam orthodox tea and Muga silk. New Delhi’s efforts to give Pashmina the tag hit a hurdle with two Pakistani trade lobbies contesting its claim.
President of Azad Jammu & Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Pakistan-Occupied-Kashmir, Zulfikar Abbasi, told HT: “Pashmina is common Kashmiri heritage. A patent for Srinagar Valley would be unfair just like a patent only for Pakistan. We are open to a joint GI status.”
On whether India would consider a joint patent, Srinagar’s Craft Development Institute Director MS Farooqi said: “A joint GI is possible only if it is proven that Pakistani Pashmina is the same wool as our. The finest Pashmina is found only in the Srinagar Valley.”