Even as the Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP) of the Union Commerce Ministry is organsing an international conference on IP Law and Enforcement next week, experts in the field have raised concerns on IP and public interest as well as a government of India’s established stand of balanced approach to intellectual protection and enforcement.
Government of India in all international and domestic forum has always taken a firm stand to balance the IP protection and enforcement, a private interest with the public interest i.e. access to medicines, access to knowledge, access to technology etc. The conference is a clear departure from this stand and the agenda is completely IP Maximalist. The agenda seem to accommodate only corporations and law firms and have excluded academia and civil society organisations, experts say.
The DIPP along with Confederation of Indian Industries and Intellectual Property India (IPO) is holding an international conference on IP Law and Enforcement in Noida on November 20 to 21.
It will actually serve as a platform for US government and the US based corporations to lobby with the Indian policy makers and IP office. For instance, Pratibha Singh, a Member of the IP Think Tank is chairing a session in the conference. The IP think tank recently formed by Ministry of Commerce & Industry and has been entrusted with the task of framing India’s national IP policy and even to look at the anomalies in the existing IP law.
“We have heard that CII is a cosponsor of the Intellectual Property Owner’s Association’s (IPOA) controversial visit to India and the CII-DIPP- Conference is linked to the IPOA Delegation visit to India. This IP lobby delegation is visiting Intellectual Property Offices (IPO) in Chennai and Delhi, Intellectual Property Appellate Tribunal (IPAB) and High Court of Delhi which raises serious concerns of ethics and conflict of interest’, experts argue.