The background of constituting “Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB)” in India
The capital and labor forces were the main force of Commerce and Industry since the inception of internet technology. From the end of the 20th century, the knowledge and technology became the main factor of industrial development. Technology oriented manufacturing process replaced the labor intensive production method. The new mechanized process cut the production cost substantially. Thus the industry began to create a huge amount of wealth asset and the accumulated assets were invested to generate new products to bring the happiness and comfort in the life of human being. The neo liberal economy created an environment of speedy research and development works. The technology becomes a buzz word of the present society.
At the same time, the instant communications pose a threat to the new invention. The new technology developed by one company can be accessed by its competitors within a few hours through instant communication facility and mobile workforce. Another factor is the modern industries are getting easy access to the traditional knowledge of a geographical region. Therefore, the industries and various countries demand the protection of the new invention and traditional knowledge of geographical region.
After several round of negotiations, the world community formulated a guidelines to protect the new invention and traditional knowledge. Most of the World Trade Organization (WTO) countries agreed to modify the laws and enforce new laws in the following areas of intellectual property:
- Copyright and Related Rights
- Trade Marks
- Geographical Indication
- Industrial Designs
- Layout Designs of Integrated Circuits
- Trade Secrets
- Plant Varieties
The rich heritage of India and a huge number of intelligent workforces are the great assets of Indian economy. In this hour, India felt the need a stringent patent law to protect its traditional knowledge and technology. Considering it, Government of India amended the “Patents Act 1970”, “Designs Act 1911”, “Trade and Merchandise Act 1958”, “Copyright Act 1957” according to the guidelines of the World Trade Organization. The Government also enacted new laws like “Semiconductor Integrated Circuit Layout Design Act 2000” and “Geographical Indication of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act 1999 to protect the traditional knowledge”.
The new laws open the gate of huge amount of patent and copyright litigations. On the other hand, many national and trans-national Companies file applications to obtain the patents of their products from India. To meet this challenge, Government of India’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry constituted “Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB)” on 15th September, 2003 for the speedy disposal of Patent and Copyright applications. The Board was also empowered the revocation of patent, cancel the trademark and taking decisions on the matters arising out of Geographical Indications.