In a major step towards high-tech investigations in India, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry Minister launched an Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Enforcement Toolkit for police for assistance in dealing with cases relating to Trademarks and Copyrights infringements.
Although small, but it is a major move with regard to carrying investigations. The toolkit will provide a standardised ready reckoner for law enforcement agencies in India in relation to enforcement efforts against IP crimes, specifically trade mark and copyright counterfeiting and piracy. The toolkit contains details in respect of offences under IP laws such as Trade Marks Act, 1999, Copyright Act, 1957 and applicable provisions of the Indian Penal Code, 1860, Powers available to police for search and seizure under the IP laws and Criminal Procedure Code, 1973, Checklists for registering a complaint, and for search and seizure operations related to IP Crimes. Toolkit will strengthen enforcement mechanisms for IPR infringement.
The Cell for IPR Promotion and Management (CIPAM) and Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) developed the toolkit. CIPAM is a nodal agency under the Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP), Ministry of Commerce and Industry to take forward implementation of the National IPR Policy and to work for awareness programs in country. CIPAM has undertaken several measures to strengthen the IP ecosystem in our country.
In addition to details of offences under various laws, it provides for checklists for registering complaints and conducting searches and seizures. General guidelines for search and seizure in case of IP crimes are laid down by the toolkit. This toolkit will be provided to all state police departments across the nation. In order to strengthen the enforcement mechanism, CIPAM has also organised batches of training programmes for police officials in state of Andhra Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. Trainees enacted plays and participated in quizzes and other activities based on IPRs. CIPAM has also written to all the state police and judicial academies to undertake training of police and judicial officers on Enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights.
CIPAM is actively facilitating international engagements in the field of Intellectual Property Rights. In fact, in this regard, two Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) on IPRs were recently signed by India with U.K. and Singapore. It is to be seen in coming years on how fast and effectively the law enforcement agencies adapt to the changing scenario of investigations in these specialised fields of intellectual property rights.