SWEEPING UP THOSE GIs!

According to news reports, out of India’s 1,000 potential Geographical Indications, only one-tenth are recognized. However, in a move that will contribute towards strengthening the small and medium scale industries (SMEs), around 14 Geographical Indication are set to get registration under the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999.

Globally, 232 items like Kancheepuram silk and Darjeeling tea enjoy this protection currently. Among some prominent foreign registrations are; Champagne, Peruvian Pisco, Tequila etc. The products slated to get GI protection are; Nagpur orange, Kangra painting, Moradabad Metal Craft, Firozabad Glass, Kannauj Perfume, Kanpur saddlery, Saharanpur wood craft, Dharmavaram handloom pattu sarees and paavadas, Warli painting, Kolhapur jaggery, Thewa art work and three Manipur-based knit works Moirang phee, Wangkhei phee and Shaphee lanphee. As of April this year, Karnataka, with 32 GI products topped the national list followed by Tamil Nadu (24), Andhra Pradesh (22) and Kerala (20).

The beacon is hopeful that such initiatives will encourage other SMEs to form associations and start safeguarding their interests as well.

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