From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : About the GI tag
Mains level : Benefits of GI Indications
- Two well-known products from Tamil Nadu — Dindigul lock and Kandangi Saree — have been given the Geographical Indication (GI) tag by The Geographical Indications Registry in Chennai.
- The Dindigul locks are known throughout the world for their superior quality and durability, so much so that even the city is called Lock City.
- Government institutions such as prisons, godowns, hospitals, and even temples use these locks instead of other machine-made ones.
- The application for the lock was made by the Dindigul Lock, Hardware and Steel Furniture Workers Industrial Co-operative Society Limited.
- More than 3,125 lock manufacturing units are limited to an area of 5 km in and around Dindigul.
- The abundance of iron in this region is the reason for the growth of the industry.
- There are over 50 varieties of locks made by the artisans using raw materials such as MS flat plates and brass plates procured from the nearby towns, including Madurai and Salem.
- The Kandangi sarees are manufactured in the entire Karaikudi taluk in Sivaganga district.
- They are characterised by large contrast borders and some are known to have borders covering as far as two-thirds of the saree which is usually around 5.10 m-5.60 m in length.
- Worn in summer, these cotton sarees are usually bought by customers in bulk.
- The Amarar Rajeev Gandhi Handloom Weavers Co-operative Production and Sales Society Limited filed the application for the Kandangi saree.
Geographical Indications in India
- A Geographical Indication is used on products that have a specific geographical origin and possess qualities or a reputation that are due to that origin.
- Such a name conveys an assurance of quality and distinctiveness which is essentially attributable to its origin in that defined geographical locality.
- This tag is valid for a period of 10 years following which it can be renewed.
- Recently the Union Minister of Commerce and Industry has launched the logo and tagline for the Geographical Indications (GI) of India.
- The first product to get a GI tag in India was the Darjeeling tea in 2004.
- The Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999 (GI Act) is a sui generis Act for protection of GI in India.
- India, as a member of the WTO enacted the Act to comply with the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights.
- Geographical Indications protection is granted through the TRIPS Agreement.