Kerala unveils intellectual property rights policy

June 27th, 2008 - 9:22 pm ICT by IANS  

Thiruvananthapuram, June 27 (IANS) Kerala Friday unveiled its intellectual property rights (IPR) policy aimed at safeguarding the state’s rich base of ayurveda and herbal medicine. With this move, Kerala has become the first state in the country to have an IPR policy in place.

Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan unveiled the IPR policy here by handing over a copy of it to S.P. Shukla, former civil servant and India’s representative at the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) talks.

Law Minister M. Vijayakumar, who was instrumental in formulating the policy, told IANS that the Indian Patents Act and the Biological Diversity Act, 2002, clearly stated that every state should form a biodiversity board.

“This policy is vital for Kerala because of the state’s rich traditional knowledge and practice of ayurveda, the Indian system of medicine. Now we will bring out legislation to this effect,” Vijayakumar said.

The government’s policy would bring cheer to those involved in ayurveda.

“Now what we will do is to prepare a list of items to be included in the list. Till now there were some areas and products where we have lost. But with the policy now ready, we will not lose anymore,” Vijayakumar added.

The policy also gives amble powers to the State Biodiversity Board and henceforth any research activity on the traditional knowledge base of Kerala would need a clearance from it.

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