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It takes a GI tag to spot a fake

Staff Reporter

Bangalore: With various artisans' products flooding the market, it has become difficult to ascertain which among them is fake. The problem is greatly solved if the artisans go in for a Geographical Indicator (GI) tag, which is similar to the protection of intellectual property rights, said Zaheda Mulla, legal expert.

She was addressing artisans of Karnataka bronze-ware and Ganjifa cards at the cluster-level awareness programme on GI, jointly organised by Development Commissioner (Handicrafts) and Textiles Committee, Ministry of Textiles, Government of India, here on Tuesday.

Ms. Mulla said Karnataka had the most number of GIs (28) in the country, followed by Tamil Nadu (18). “It is important for artisans to register to avail themselves of the benefits under GI. We have finished a part of the formality of getting a GI tag for bronze-ware and Ganjifa art,” she said.

She said that the second part of the formality was to get the artisans organised, form a society and get it registered. “The society can then rope in more artisans. All the members have to follow the set quality parameters. Each GI product is then given a logo. This will help consumers differentiate between the original and counterfeit products,” she added.

M.K.H.K. Jilani, another legal expert, said the GI Registry, Intellectual Property Rights office, Chennai, and the Quality Council of India were deliberating on a national policy for GIs.

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