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Govt gives GIs to 10 more goods

After Basmati rice and Darjeeling tea, the government has now initiated the process for granting Geographical Indications to 10 more goods and commodities.

india Updated: Feb 09, 2006 13:31 IST

After Basmati rice and Darjeeling tea, the government has now initiated the process for granting Geographical Indications to 10 more goods and commodities, including the delicious Dussheri Mangoes, Goa's famous Feni and the king of saffron - Kashmiri Zafran, with a view to protecting country's trade interests in international markets.

As part of the process, the Centre has mandated National Horticulture Board to conduct the necessary work required for Registration of GIs to the 10 crops under Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999.

Besides the Feni, Kashmiri Zafran (saffron) and Dussheri mangoes, the other products which are likely to be granted GIs are: Kagazi Akhrot (walnut), Kargil Khubani (Apricot), Nagpur Santara (Orange), Mango Malda, Meghalaya Turmeric, Sikkim Black Cardaomom and Dindori Wine of Nasik.

However, producers and manufacturers of these goods would still have to wait as the entire process would take more than one year, official sources said.

Once the process is complete, it would give authorised users exclusive rights to the use of GI in relation to goods in respect of which it is registered.

This will provide legal protection to Indian Geographical Indications against unauthorised use, which would boost exports of these products and generate revenues for manufacturers in these regions.

The Board, which works under the Ministry of Agriculture, is currently in the process of appointing agencies who would identify and screen possible attributes to develop indicators for production and development of GI goods.

The agencies would conduct video recording of old people who know about these crops, collect bio-climatic maps from Met department, obtain DNA finger prints of the crops and interact with the existing GI Registry.

These agencies would also get background material about historical records like gazetteer, archeological literature, survey reports and books about the scientific and botanical classification of the crops and varieties with scientific and morphological characters have to be included.

Basmati rice, Darjeeling tea, Alphonso mango, Chanderi Saris of Madhya Pradesh are among the few commodities which already have GIs in India, although there have been instances where similar products were being sold with the same brand name in foreign countries such as Russia and the US.

In fact, grant of GIs to Darjeeling tea was one of the contentious issues between India and Russia during the negotiations for Moscow's entry to the WTO. Russia has now agreed to grant GIs to Darjeeling tea, a move which would boost exports of the commodity to that country.

The agencies would conduct video recording of old people who know about these crops, collect bio-climatic maps from Met department, obtain DNA finger prints of the crops and interact with the existing GI Registry.

First Published: Feb 09, 2006 13:14 IST