DPIIT IPR Chair, Osmania University

Intellectual Property Rights

Intellectual Property (IP) refers to creations of the mind, or 'intellect' such as inventions; literary and artistic works; designs; and symbols, names and images used commercially. A property generated by a person using his/ her mind and intellect is called Intellectual Property and the rights over this property given to the individual are termed as Intellectual Property Rights. It is a wide concept and includes intellectual activities in fields such as industrial, literary, scientific and artistic. Copyright, Trademark, Patent, Designs are examples of such IPRs.

IPR comes in the form of inventions, music, films, videos, brands, designs, etc. They play an important role in development of human race and therefore it is of utmost importance to promote and recognize them. Hence, enforcement of IPRs is necessary for economic development, especially industries, rely on such IPRs. It is essential to provide an incentive for new creations. These incentives come in the form of monopoly rights given to the creator of such IP. Respecting others' IPRs is necessary to promote such development. Only when an assurance of rights over the IP generated is given to the creator, one will be willing to generate more such IPs. Therefore, recognizing and respecting such rights is necessary. Not only to the creator but also IPRs are important for consumers as well to identify the products and ensure their purchase with the guarantee of quality.

The Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) which came into effect on January 1, 1995, is one of the most comprehensive multilateral agreements on intellectual property. Intellectual Property, as provided in Article 1 of TRIPS Agreement, refers to all categories of intellectual property that are the subject of sections 1 through 7 of Part-II of the TRIPS Agreement. It covers the following areas of intellectual property viz.; copyright and related rights (i.e. the rights of performers, producers of sound recordings and broadcasting organizations); trademarks; geographical indications; industrial designs; patents, including the protection of new varieties of plants; and undisclosed information including trade secrets.