Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) –

The Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) will have wide range of socio economic technological and political impacts. The obligation under the Trade Related Intellectual Property Rights System (TRIPS) means all the members of World Trade Organization (WTO) are supposed to implement natural systems of minimum standards.

Rapid technology obsolescence and fierce competitions lead one to protect the innovations using the tools of IPR such as patents, trade marks, service marks, industrial design registration, copy rights and trade secrets.

The legal frame work for IPR is in a stage of dynamic adjustments and changes to accommodate the challenges and new situations that result from convergence of technology.

The prime importance of intellectual property in India is well established almost at all levels like statutory, administrative and judicial.

The agreement established by the World Trade Organization (WTO) and agreed by Trade Related aspects of Intellectual Property System (TRIPS) was ratified by India in January 1995.

This agreement has established some minimum standards for protection thereby enforcing the intellectual property rights in member countries.

This sort of enforcement of agreement / law is required to promote effective and sufficient protection of intellectual property rights in order to reduce distortions and impediments for international trade.

Such agreements establish the norms and conditions with regard to the following intellectual properties.

  1. Patents
  2. Plant Varieties
  3. Undisclosed information
  4. Design of Integrated Circuits
  5. Industrial Design
  6. Trademarks
  7. Copyrights and
  8. Geographical Indications.

Intellectual property (IP) is the information and original expression that derives its original value from creative ideas with a commercial value.

Intellectual property permits the people to have fully independent ownership for their innovations and creativity like that for their own physical property.

By providing guard for such innovations, the owner of IP can be encouraged for further innovations to the benefit of the society in general.

It may not be possible to protect IP and obtain intellectual property rights unless they have been applied for and sanction obtained.

Many countries having large number of local industries with innovative designs have specific laws to safeguard the innovations by some regulations with respect to copying of inventions, identifying symbols and creative slogans.

As in other developing countries, India too showed for quick enforcement of intellectual property right protection laws. India has to comply being a member of WTO for such implementation of laws at least by 2005.

As Billgates, the CEO of Microsoft Corporation and IPR conscious business leader, has distinguished India as a promising base for software development.

India’s IPR scene is no deterrent to foreign companies. These laws consist of distinct types of intangible properties.

Essential Elements of Intellectual Property Rights

IPR is a broad term for covering

  1. Patents for inventions
  2. Copyrights for material
  3. Trademarks for broad identity and
  4. Trade secrets.

These properties are termed in general as “Intellectual Property”. Intellectual Property is an asset that can be bought or sold, licensed and exchanged.

But of-course unlike other properties, intellectual property is intangible; rather it cannot be identified by its specific parameters. These properties are protected on a national basis.


This refers to innovations – new or improved product and processes which are meant for industrial applications. This is a territorial right which needs registration for a limited time.

Patent is a contract between an inventor as an individual and the society as a whole. The inventor has exclusive right to prevent anybody making use of and / or selling a patented invention. Of-course this is only for a specific period of time till the inventor discloses the details of invention to the public.

Unlike other rights, this protects effect, but not image or expression. A well crafted patent can give monopoly rights to business in its area. A patent is expensive but the preparatory steps are cheaper.

The legal authority in this patent right is the World Trade Organization (WTO) agreement with respect to Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Right (TRIPS).

This provides the international standard for the required duration of 20 years from the date of filing the patent. Once this period is over, people are free to make use of this invention as they like.

However, though the member has a right to prevent others making use of his patented invention, the owner has no right to make use or sell the invention itself.

Patents are granted under national laws. These rights are enforceable by civil laws rather than criminal proceedings.

The TRIPS agreement should provide patent for any invention, be a product or a process, provided they are entirely new, involving an inventive method and suitable for industrial applications.

In other words the patent must be a novel and a useful one and capable of practical application and more specifically it must be “non obviousness”.

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Santhakumar Raja

Hi, This blog is dedicated to students to stay update in the education industry. Motivates students to become better readers and writers.

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