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Published : August 10, 2012 | Author : Rajasmitaa
Category : Intellectual Property | Total Views : 4795 | Rating :

Rajasmitaa Das 5th Year law student from KIIT School of Law

Issues relating to the Patentability of Biotechnological subject matter in Indian Agriculture

IPR Issues in Biotechnology:
Biotechnology is a popular term for the generic technology of the 21st century. Although it has been utilized for centuries in traditional production processes, modern biotechnology is only about 50 years old, and in the last decades it has witnessed tremendous developments. Since R&D in biotechnology is extremely time consuming and requires huge investment, granting Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) is an effective tool to protect biotechnology inventions. There are however, no internationally accepted guidelines for the management of IPR, and a wide range of opinions exists regarding the utility of IPR in the area of biotechnology.

The initial patent legislations were not in favour of providing patent protection for plants, agricultural produce and agricultural and horticultural methods. Even today, some patents legislation, for instance, the Indian patents Act, does not recognize plants and agricultural methods as appropriate subject matter of patent protection.

The debate on patent protection for plants in the USA was temporarily set to rest by the coming into force of the general patent act or UPA in the United States until the need for patent protection for plants was raised again at the end of the 1970s. This debate was settled once and for all in the United States in 1985 in favor of patent protection for plants.

The TRIPS Agreement, Article 1956, had allowed a total transition period of 10 years (January 1995-December 2004) to the developing country members for extending product patent protection in their respective territory to the areas of technology that were not
protect able earlier. During the transition period, the member countries provided an agreed mail box arrangement for receiving patent applications field by foreign nationals for such products. Thus India received mail box applications as per the Patents (Amendment) Act,
1999 for inventions in the areas of food and chemical ( including biochemical and bio technical ) substances, also related to agriculture, Many of these patent applications filed in India during that period were the national phase entries of the international
applications earlier filed elsewhere by the applicants under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT applications).

Biotechnology for Life Forms
The field of medical biotechnology and pharmaceuticals is mainly concerned with the patenting of life forms as most of the research stems from tests performed on life forms. Most industrialized countries allow patenting of microorganisms as long as they meet the criteria of patentability, such as, novelty, utility and non-obviousness. The question shrouding patentability of life forms, again, may be directed towards different kinds of life forms right from microorganisms to clones of animals and humans. Therefore, it can be noticed that there is robust connection between patenting of biological procesand the growth and development countries to review their laws on patenting of biological process as it has a serious impact on biotechnology and overall development of these countries.

Biotechnology as used for Pharmaceuticals and drugs Manufacture:
Biologics are drugs manufactured through biological processes. They are some of the hottest drugs around today and certainly among the most expensive. Unlike chemical drugs, which typically are comprised of several hundred atoms, biologics are complex proteins that contain thousands of atoms folded over onto themselves. As biologics is not a chemical but a protein, it has to be produced from a living organism. Much of debate has surfaced over the patenting of biologics as they are exact replicas of naturally occurring substances, are not themselves patentable. Any patent involving biologics can be contentious, mainly because many people philosophically disagree with the notion that life can be patented. Companies would seek patents for biologics after they make minor modifications to a naturally occurring molecule, even though it is nearly identical to the natural substance. The US recognizes these patents (the landmark case was Diamond v Chakrabarty, in which the Supreme Court held that man-made microorganisms were patentable). Other countries, including European Union members, who typically support strong patent protections, have moral objections to the idea of patenting natural substances.

Post Chakrabarty trends- The Chakrabarty decisions and the subsequent actions enacted by the US congress provided great economic stimulus to the patenting of micro-organisms and cells, and in turn provided stimulus to the growth of the biotechnological industry in the 1980’s. However, increased patenting of biotechnological inventions has led to litigation related to patent infringement issues. The patent litigation is only likely to increase in future considering the overlapping of patent claims, the high value of products, problem of prior publication and the fact that many companies are pursuing the same product. The increase in the patent claims leads to the inability of the patent offices to process the biotechnological inventions in a timely manner. Turnover amongst the patent examiners, luring them to the private sectors by offering higher pay etc are reasons for the delay in the reviewing of patents.
Biotechnology For Plants

In the advent of plant genome sequencing, efforts have resulted in the patenting of plant DNA sequences by the plant biotechnology industry and public research institutions. DNA sequences are patentable only when the gene has been isolated and a utility for it demonstrated. Plant patents in US are granted to any person who ‘invents or discovers and asexually reproduces any distinct and new variety of plant, including cultivated sports, mutants, hybrids, and newly found seedlings, other than a tuber propagated plant or a plant found in an uncultivated state’. Further, all the provisions applicable to the patents for inventions also apply to patents for plants unless otherwise provided by the statue. Similarly in the United Kingdom, the law is clear that just because a product consists of or contains biological material is produced, processed or used, it is not to be considered as non-patentable.

Biotechnology in Agriculture
In India, biotechnology research and development (R &D) is in progress particularly in crop improvement. The most promising benefit from genetic engineering is the use of recombinant DNA techniques. Because it is possible to break through natural species barriers systematically by moving genes from one species to another that do not combine in nature. The genetically modified (GM) crops have been developed by using input traits (e.g. resistance to insect pests and plant diseases), output traits (e.g. delayed fruit ripening, better taste, nutritious, elimination of saturated fats in cooking oils, elimination of allergens, better delivery of necessary nutrients) agronomic traits (e.g. resistance to drought, salinity, acidity, flood, etc. and increase in crop yield). It takes a decade or more period to develop technology and perhaps one innovation in thousand becomes a successful commercial product or process. For example, maize seeds with high protein quality (e.g. amino acids lysine and tryptophan), grass pea seeds with very low content of neurotoxin (e.g. b-N-oxalyamino- L-alanin), rice grains containing higher amount of B- carotene), mustard oil with low saturated fat, and other crops have been engineered by public and private institutions, and are in either advanced stage of development or field testing (Table 1). The new trait-genetic use restriction technology (T-GURT) is being employed as a part of biotechnology by means of terminator, verminator and traitor genes. In this case, users have to rely upon the chemically dependent plants with proprietory genes. Although this protection restricts unauthorized copying of patents and monopoly in the international marketing these technologies have led to substantial conflicts between business ethic and humanitarian concerns because farmers cannot save seeds of their crops at the end of the crop season. It may therefore pose a potential threat to our food security. Likewise, the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) has decided not to incorporate T-GURT in forthcoming plant breeding programmes of international institutions as it may affect the sustainable agriculture due to negative effects on biodiversity and uncertain effects on socio-economy of the country. For example, whether terminator seeds are consumable and safe for humans, animals, birds, beneficial insects and micro-organisms is uncertain; pre-soaking of seeds in tetracycline solution is dangerous to environment and human health; pollens of plant containing terminator gene pollinate and produce seeds that are self destructing.

Basmati Rice:
The Swiss and German scientists developed GM rice containing snippets of DNA borrowed from bacterium Erwiniauredovora and daffodils that gives a grain a golden yellow hue and hence nicknamed as “Golden rice”. Indian scientists have sequenced 6 million base pairs of chromosome II of rice for desired genotype for higher productivity and improved quality. Food Standards Agency is now proposing an isotope and trace elements analysis, which can reveal the geographic origin of rice by comparing the unique trace elements in it. Recently, Indian rice in the foreign markets witnessed tough challenge as a consequence of the decision of the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) because this office granted permission on 2 Sep 1997 under brand name “Texmati” domestic and foreign markets with a label claiming the product to be superior or at least equivalent to Indian Basmati Therefore Government of India filed a petition in the USPTO and subsequently Rice Tec Inc surrendered four claims in September 2000 and 11 more claims in August 2001. The Rice Tec Inc is presently selling basmati after developing its novel lines named BAS-867, RT-117, RT-112. The UK is allowing basmati only from India and Pakistan though it is patented as Texmati in the USA and as Jasmati in Thailand.

Indian Proprietary Agricultural Technology Profile:
The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) is the IP leader with over 60 granted patents in various field of plant and animals science, including biotechnology, diary technology, animal disease diagnostics, and therapeutics, engineering and post harvest processing, and environmental science. Other patents in agriculture fields include
universities, Indian Institute of Technologies, and other research universities and organizations like Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), Defense Research Developing Organization (DRDO), Bose Institute etc.Quite a few patents have been granted to individual inventors for inventions such as: An improved agriculture harrow disk, Tractor mounted multipurpose deep trencher, a preparation for enhancing yield in agriculture and horticulture, a composition for enhancing nitrogen fixation in legumes etc.

According to the Indian Patent Act 1970 and subsequent amendments, patents could be applied mainly for agricultural tools and machinery or the processes for the development of agricultural chemicals. However methods in agriculture or horticulture, life forms of other microorganisms like plant varieties, strain/breeds of animals, fish or birds as well as products, and any process for medicinal. Surgical, curative, prophylactic or other treatments of animals or plants to render them free of diseases or to increase their economic value of their products as such earlier did not constitute patentable subject matter. Inventions except for method inventions relating to substances prepared or produced by chemical processes including alloys, optical glass, semiconductors and inter-metallic compounds and substances intended for use or capable of being used as drug and food were not patentable till the beginning of 2005. Since then inventions related to agrochemicals as products could be patented according to the Patent (Amendments ) Act, 2005. Earlier in India there was no legislation to protect plant varieties. However after becoming a signatory to TRIPS Agreement, need for such legislation was felt since Article 27.3(b) of TRIPS Agreement made It mandatory to provide protection for plant varieties either by patents or by an effective sui generis system or by any combination threof, the choice having been left to the signatory states.

In India, a sui generis system for protection of plant varieties was developed, integrating the rights of breeders, farmers and village communities. Sui generis enables designing of one’s own system of protection for plant varieties as an alternative or addition to a patent system for protecting plants. As a result of this legislation in India IPR protection came into being for new plant varieties in the shape of Protection of Plant Varieties in the shape of the Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights (PPVFR) Act in 2001. This development created favourable legal conditions for international partnerships in biotechnology R&D.

Countries such as USA having a strong R&D base in plant genetic engineering have chosen a robust Plant Utility Patent Legislation. India is certainly not inclined to adopt patent protection regimes for its plant varieties, rather it has shown inclination to adopt a sui generis legislation which is non-patent, ostensibly for reasons that India is predominantly agricultural and has a strong R&D base in conventional plant breeding. While Plant Utility Patents Act provides for broad patents over plant varieties, traits and genes and even the physical parts of the plants, plant breeder’s rights provide IPR only over varieties.

The UPOV affords protection to those plant breeders who produce plant varieties fulfilling the criteria of distinctiveness, uniformity and stability (DUS). However, the current version of the UPOV in 1991 had added additional criteria of ‘new’ to DUS thus rendering DUS as NDUS.

Restrictions with respect to Agriculture Related Inventions in India
The restrictions on protecting inventions relating to agriculture and all life forms have been a part of the Indian patent system. Section 3(j) of the Act specifies that ‘plants and animals in whole or any part thereof other than microorganisms but including seeds, varieties and species and essentially biological processes for production or propagation of plants and animals’. Though section 3(j) did not exist till 2002 and was introduced to refuse a case of patenting of a life form, today Sections 3(h). 3(i) and 3(j) together further restrict the scope of patenting in the area of agriculture. Section 3(h) states that ‘a method of agriculture or horticulture’ is not patentable. Section 3(i) states that ‘any process for medical, surgical, curative, prophylactic, diagnostic or other treatment of human beings or any process for similar treatment of human beings or any process for similar treatment of animals to render them free of disease or to increase their economic value or that of their products’ is not patentable. Further, Section 3(j) prohibits patenting of conventional techniques/processes such as plant breeding methods such as tissue culture techniques and the like. The implication is that any new plant variety, arising out of an innovative use of conventional techniques or modern biotechnological methods, is not patentable subject matter. In the present scenario, such a view is short sighted and presupposes that Indian agricultural scientists are not capable of developing inventions in this field or should not be allowed to protect their inventions.


1. Harmonization of IPR System
· Recognising that the capital intensive frontier areas of technology generation require high investment and at times long gestation periods, and that IP protection is one of the important means of resource generation aimed at further enhancing the R&D, a high priority should be given to generation, evaluation, protection and effective commercial utilisation of tangible products of intellectual property in agriculture.

· A dynamic and rational approach should be followed for IPR protection and portfolio management. Protection should be availed for the intellectual property involved in inventing new technologies using one or more than one form of protection in conjunction. Choice of any form of protection should be based on its relevance, enforcement mechanism, scope, and jurisprudence. Use of trademarks for brand development of Indian agricultural products should be encouraged as safety net in agribusiness. Remedies like ‘passing off’ should be availed of in jurisdictions where Common Law Jurisprudence is effective.

· Realising the emergence and importance of several new tools for growth in farm sector—biotechnology, hybrid technology, biocontrol agents, biofertilisers, vaccines, diagnostics, improved implements and machinery—and also that IPR regime is bound to affect development and use of these tools, future technological options in agriculture should be fully harnessed from the knowledge, the art and the strength to realise the IPR opportunities. Core competence should be developed through appropriate means, mechanisms and systems to harness the best of the intellectual property generated.

· Recognising the need to capitalise on our national resources and capabilities to attain and sustain IPR advantages locally, regionally and globally with timely and effective action, the area of IPR in agriculture should be addressed in conjunction with traditional rights and indigenous knowledge. Access to genetic resources in the new regime is likely to be facilitated but it will certainly be regulated. Rights to equitable sharing of benefits must be suitably balanced with the rights to IPR protection wherever applicable.

· Acknowledging that the issues of IP protection by third parties based on our indigenous traditional knowledge (ITK) are sensitive and important, a high priority and liberal financial allocation should be made to the projects that may lead to development and strengthening of traditional knowledge and resource databases in order to discourage such protection by third parties.

· Appreciating that in accordance with the intergovernmental commitment by developing countries to grant product patents in all fields of technology earliest by 1 January 2005, high priority must be accorded to the development of competitive products, particularly in agrochemicals and biotechnology, in Indian agriculture, besides, further making suitable amendments in the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2002.

· Recognising the available strengths for animal genetic resources and generation of competitive technology in farm animals, poultry and fish in the country, and also realising that appropriate IP protection laws in this area are lacking, steps should be initiated on the analogy of Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights Act, 2001 so that in future animal and fish breeds/strains and also farmers’ rights on these genetic resources are protected by law.

2. Awareness Generation and Literacy in IPR
· Realising that awareness generation is important for confidence building in order to accept and apply IPR in agriculture and to naturalise the IPR culture, an intensive campaign should be launched to this effect, at all levels and for all relevant sections of the society. Increased general awareness should be brought out in public to enable them to respond to various opportunities, challenges and threats. Elaborate awareness tools—compact discs (CDs), documentary films, newspaper features and advertisements should be developed and widely disseminated in all languages through mass media.

· Issues and concerns, scope of application of IP protection in one form or the other, or in conjunction, various exceptions and exemptions, procedures and rules in the Indian and global contexts in easy to understand, simple language and comparisons with other countries on case-to-case basis must be analysed and presented for public appraisals. Recognising the absence or paucity of case laws, simple illustrations should be made for FAQs like what, where, why, how, have and havenots. Potential benefits should be explained and, at least, hypothetical examples made in relation to facilitated access to genetic resources and benefit sharing, judicious application of legislative, regulatory and administrative provisions related to IPR laws, and monetary rewards or sharing of licence fee and royalty for saleable intellectual property generated by the employees in the course of R&D.

· In order to help increase the IPR literacy in agriculture and allied sectors, compendia on IPR protection and technology transfer should be published for wide distribution. Such compendia should cover rules, procedures, forms, guidelines, other important tips and selected case studies on various provisions, admissibility and application, infringement and remedies for various forms of IPR protection in accordance with different domestic laws and also in comparison with other country laws.

· Recognising that the IPR management in agriculture requires a broad portfolio management that includes the fundamental need to link IPR protection with licensing, technology transfer, upscaling, commercialisation and safeguards, all concerned institutions/organisations should generate, publish and widely disseminate relevant information and common literature on IPR in agriculture in the form of brochures and technical bulletins, etc.

3. IPR Education, Training and Human Resource Development
· Emphasising on the need to educate children—potential inventors and innovators of future years, it is time to think of developing suitable curriculum right from the, school level. Based on short stories, poems, letters, essays and short plays, these curricula should be developed in simple language and in interactive and illustrative modes. Concerned government departments and agencies should invite contributions to this effect and announce suitable and impressive awards for the selected entries. ICAR may take lead and recommend the awarded entries for inclusion in the syllabi of the Central Board of Secondary Education and the Boards of Education in various states.

· In order to enhance the level of higher education in the country for IPR in general and IPR in relation to agriculture in particular, there must be at least one compulsory course at the undergraduate and postgraduate levels in all agricultural universities and deemed universities, and also in the law colleges all over the country. Further, an LL.M. degree programme should be started in ‘IPR laws in relation to Agriculture’ at various law colleges in the country.

· Summer and winter schools and periodic training programmes should be conducted in the country for teachers, scientists and technical staff in order to enhance national competence to appropriately address the area of IPR in agriculture and allied sectors. Appropriate modules should also be developed for foundation level training and advanced orientation of concerned scientists at selected institutions on regional basis and at other related Centres of Advanced Studies at the ICAR institutes and the SAUs.

· Human resources in the ICAR institutes and the SAUs should be developed and strengthened in order to help efficient application of IPR in agriculture and allied sectors. Focused attention should be given in the national agricultural research system for the in-country on-job training for skill up liftment and also need-based exposure of Indian scientists to the relevant scenario in other countries. Adequate funding should be provided at the central and state levels to ascertain the much needed promotion of HRD.

4. Strengthening the Institutional Mechanism—Legal, Regulatory and Administrative
· Recognising that it is important to establish an IP regime that would provide confidence in and workability for the protection of IPR in relation to agriculture and allied sectors in the country, high priority should be accorded to the process of completing the required legislative provisions and also the notification, functioning and strengthening of national institutional mechanisms corresponding to various Acts, such as the respective Controllers, National Authorities, Tribunals, Registries, etc. Further recognising that the IPR Acts mainly relate to techno-legal matters, their governance should be controlled by eminent scientists with wide experience in relevant fields and the Tribunals should also have technical members. The National Authority on Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights Act, 2001 (PPV&FR Act, 2001), should have an eminent plant breeder as its chairperson.

· Recognising that the protection of undisclosed information is the only form of IPR listed in the TRIPs Agreement for which there is no corresponding direct law in the country, and further reiterating such intergovernmental commitment, legal consultation process should be initiated to firm up the contextual position and decide the course of action. Development of related laws, such as, enactment of Biological Diversity Bill, 2000, should also receive attention. Appropriate legal instruments related to conservation, maintenance, trade and sustainable utilisation of animal genetic resources should be brought about.

· It is recommended that parallel laws like the Seeds Act should be strengthened as they help in better application and enforcement of particular IP laws, such as the PPV&FR Act, 2001, in order to support effective implementation of sui generis system of protection. Similarly, Contract Law should be reviewed to strengthen the law on Trade Secret, and the law related to land ownership of small farmholders should also be strengthened to judiciously implement the farmers’ rights.

· Management and Information Services should be strengthened in the ICAR institutions and SAUs in order to change their basic approach to research and IPR protection. Facilities should be established and strengthened for identification of relevant research areas through patent search, literature survey, UPOV database search etc. Early and conflict-resolving information services should be set up in the broader context.

· Elaborate Clearing House Mechanism (CHM) should be developed and strengthened in relation to IPR in agriculture, encompassing all possible information on basics, thematic areas, related treaties, conventions and agreements, historical to current events and future activities. It should also have copies of all Indian Acts related to various forms of IPR, their rules and procedures, forms, guidelines and other important tips. A site on the Internet should be dedicated to this CHM and various notifications, case studies, with periodic updation of other relevant information.

5. Strengthening the Policy Area
· Recognising that the principal policy area related to protection of IPR in agriculture and allied sectors is the competitive commercialisation of technologies, attention should be given to further liberalisation of agricultural markets, promotion of private sector investment and more efficient technology systems.

· Codes and procedures for rewarding the concerned partners and stakeholder scientists should be developed in the ICAR, the SAUs and other concerned institutions to bring IP culture in the NARS. This may be commensurate with the gains accrued. Alternatively, a fixed proportion, at least 40 per cent of the earnings, should be given to the scientist concerned or shared among the research partners as is presently being followed in the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) institutes.

· Recognising that high priority should be given to strengthening of support services in farm enterprises, extension, training, research and quality control, public interventions in agriculture should focus on market intelligence, technology forecasting and early warning systems. A centre for forecasting market trends and the status of the national and international markets should be established to enhance the prospects and sustainability of competitive Indian agriculture. Marketled technologies should be developed, protected and commercialised to harness greater returns on the investments made.

· There is a strategic need to increase growth-enhancing public investment, besides capital formation in agriculture, and promoting private sector activities and resource contributions. Essential ingredients must be put in place to bring much needed commerce in Indian agriculture.

· Whereas agriculture is deregulated as a result of the ongoing reform process, the lowest income groups should be continuously protected in accordance with clearly defined policy and directives by direct and indirect support programmes.

· Recognising that in the absence of proper legal framework, misuse, abuse, overexploitation and non-judicious utilisation of animal genetic resources is rampant, particular attention should be given at the national and global levels. There should be intergovernmental negotiations to address issues like the trusteeship/ownership mof animal genetic resources in various genebanks and the legal frameworks for the databanks, including acquisition of the classified data on animal genetic resources.

· In order to avail of maximum IPR-linked opportunities in competitive agriculture, India must continue to contribute towards development of a level-playing field at the intergovernmental platform between the developing and the developed economies. In the ongoing negotiations at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) for IPR in relation to genetic resources, traditional knowledge and folklore, NARS experts can play a vital role which needs to be capitalised by the government.

6. Harnessing IP-linked Technical Opportunities in Agriculture
· Trademarks should be extensively used for brand development in agriculture. Genes and gene sequences, amino acid sequences, antibodies, etc., should be protected by copyrights until there is opportunity to patent and commercialise these products. Judicious application of other forms of protection should be done as and where applicable. Protection of IPR in all cases should be essentially linked to commercialisation, sharing of royalty and other benefits, and further enhancement of relevant R&D.

· Appreciating that the agricultural research community should create/innovate, protect, and commercialise their new technologies on continuous and incremental basis, other important national responsibilities, like sustainable development, empowerment of economically weak farmers, and protection of their traditional resources and knowledge should also be prompted on high priority. Quick action should be taken to record and document farmers’ varieties in the country as available over space and time and the traditional knowledge associated with their use.

· IP linked technical opportunities in agriculture may be extended to applied management of genetic resources including microorganisms. Biotechnological advances should be integrated with genetic resource management where feasible to identify, copyright and document unique genes or gene sequences. Recognising that the germ plasm registration of PGR is in practice, specifications and guidelines should also be developed for breed registration of farm livestock.

· At least five per cent of the research budget in agriculture should be allocated to protect the public sector R&D for sustainable IPR portfolio management, and technology development and mobilisation in agriculture. Where certain technologies are considered important for food security and well being but significant avenues do not exist for IPR protection and commercialisation, development and deployment of public goods must continue to be done by the public sector R&D.

· As the IP protection is likely to be far more stringent in the years to come, agricultural markets should be constantly monitored and suitably reorganised at an appropriate time. Timely, corrective steps should be taken based on critical gaps, including the kind of IP scenario likely to emerge in future.

· Competitive funding schemes should be encouraged to develop research links between profit-making and non-profit making research institutions and to build bridges between the use of propriety and public domain resources and technology.

7. Linkages and Cooperation
· Mutually supported testing of technologies should be encouraged by a change in attitude and mindset in public, public-private or private-private partnerships to address high proportionate initial costs and risks, particularly that of the biotechnological R&D. Active partnerships should be further encouraged in exploring the new tools of applied genomics to understand and improve the biological systems in public interest.

· In order to provide encouragement for the public-private partnerships in true spirit, minimal codes of procedures should be developed and applied in different key areas of partnership. On selective basis, corporate culture should be brought about in some public sector institutions.

· Confidence building should be accelerated in cross-sectoral partnerships. Feeling of uncertainty in partnership calls from across the public and private sectors should be minimised. More opportunities should be provided for frequent interaction among the agricultural scientists, research institutions, agricultural industrial sector and entrepreneurs. The private sector should also complement the basic and strategic research by the public sector through appropriate funding and resource sharing.

· Voluntary or concessional legal advice may be provided in partnership deals of strategic importance to enhance competitiveness of Indian agriculture and to attend to the problems of uneven-playing field among the resource-rich and resource-poor potential partners. A common platform should be provided on sustainable basis to seek assistance from the attorneys and lawyers having reasonable agricultural R&D background. Besides, outsourcing for legal advice on case-to-case basis in order to competently address the techno-legal area of IPR protection in agriculture, the ICAR and SAU set ups should appoint law officers in their IPR Cells in order to strengthen their institutional mechanism for IP protection.

· Realising the importance of jurisdictional limits in respect of the application of IPR laws and the situations concerning enforcement and discipline, control of agribusiness abroad should be addressed by all concerned in a national spirit. Agencies like APEDA, FICCI and CII should earmark resources and funds to meet the contingent needs for relevant transnational IPR cases involving the Indian agricultural sector and to provide emergent support on case-to-case basis.
# http://www.legalserviceindia.com/article/l254-Patenting-Recent-Biotechnological-Inventions.html, last visited on 27th March, 2012
# Dewan Mohan., IPR Protection in Agriculture: An Overview, Journal of Intellectual Property Rights, Vol 16, March 2011, pp 131
# Kochhar Sudhir., Analysis of Opportunities and Challenges in IPR and Agriculture in the Indian Context, Journal of Intellectual Property Rights, Vol 16, March 2011, pp 69
# http://www.slideshare.net/shradha29/patentability-of-microorganisms, last visited on 28th March 2012
# http://fbae.org/2009/FBAE/website/our-position-ipr.html (last visited 18.03.2012)
# Supra note 2, pp 70
# Dewan, Mohan., IPR Protection in Agriculture: An Overview, Journal of Intellectual Property Rights, Vol 16, March 2011, pp 133
# Supra note 3
# Mittal, Rekha and Singh, Gian., Patenting Activites in Agriculture from India, Journal of Intellectual Property Right, Vol 10, July 2005, pp 317
# Supra note 9
# Intellectual Property Rights And The Management Of Traditional Knowledge In Indian Agriculture, Journal of Knowledge Management Practice, Vol. 11, No. 2, June 2010
# (web site- http://www.tlainc.com/articl229.htm)
# ibid
# ibid
# http://www.pfionline.com/index.php/columns/ipr/133-patenting-agriculture-an-emerging-opportunity-or-threat-for-society, last visited on 28th March, 2012
# Priyanka Sardana and Vijay Sardan, “Patenting Agriculture: An Emerging Opportunity or Threat for Society”,
# Supra note 14
# JAYASHREE WATAL, “Intellectual Property Rights In Indian Agriculture”, Indian Council For Research On International Economic Relations, July 1998
# http://www.preservearticles.com/2011120618179/patenting-of-human-genes-moral-and-ethical-issues.html, last visited on 28th March, 2012
# Supra note14
# Supra note 18

The  author can be reached at: rajasmitaadas@legalserviceindia.com

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