Intellectual properties (IP) are formulations of one's idea, innovation, design, etc. They are intangible in nature which means they are non-physical properties of an individual. Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) are granted to individuals to protect their intellectual properties. At present, India has laws governing Trade Marks, Patents, Copyrights, Geographical Indications, Data Protection, Designs and Trade secrets.
Books, articles, newspapers, paintings, photographs and the like literary works are all protected under copyright and related rights.
Innovations, inventions and models are protected by Patent rights.
Logos, brands, symbols, signals, etc are protected under Trademarks.
Specific products which hold their reputation to their place of origin are protected under Geographical Indications.
Artistic aspects of products and designs are covered under Industrial Designs.
Underneath we aim to discuss the importance of IPR awareness, how individuals can benefit from it, its relation with the growth of the economy and recent initiative taken by the Indian Government.
IPR Awareness and its assets
As technology is becoming a fundamental part of our lives, people are becoming more informed and continuously accomplishing new ideas and inventions but distinct things carry more responsibilities and assurance is one of them.
IPR is basically a contract between the owner of IP and the government, where the government guarantees to protect the interests of owners. So, if you are not aware of your rights you cannot claim for the exploitation of your IP.
Following are the importance of IPR awareness:-
When IP owners feel protected they also encourage other people to create more new ideas and articles without any fear of violation.
Awareness is not just knowing your rights but also to know your duties so that you don't violate rights of others, for instance- If a start-up wants to file an application for trademark protection, the start-up must be aware of the prerequisites of filing a trademark application, should have well-researched that the trademark is rare, should not aim to mislead anyone and carries emotional attributes of the product.
Myntra Logo Case- According to the Times of India, a complaint was filed against Myntra's Logo and the complaint stated that the overall arrangement of the colour design of the letter “M” in the logo was offensive and insulting a woman's dignity.
Now some are referring to it as an abuse of rights by the complainant because they believe there was nothing wrong with the previous logo. However, Myntra took care of it within a month but you can clearly relate how different mindsets of people can challenge the sensitive characteristic, the trademark carries and curves it into something else and therefore people need to consider each and every possible aspect.
Now Myntra is a well-off financially but what if this happens with a start-up? It appears that it's very easy to change the Trademark but actually, in terms of a company, it's a very time-consuming process where the company has to experience huge losses.
IPR importance for start-ups
IPR helps to distinguish your company from the competitors.
When a start-up protects its ideas by patenting, its cost rises and hence more investors open up for investing in the start-up.
Investors desire to acquire a start-up whose intellectual property rights are protected.
IPR also protects start-ups against huge companies that have far larger resources.
IPR and Economy
More effective IPR protection in a developing country such as India supports technology development and increases the economy.
It boosts innovation by rendering legal protection of inventions.
India has constantly moved on to a higher GDP increase in the past few years and this has been made achievable by mainly two factors:
a. the growth of consumerism within the country and
b. India has been able to expand its saving and investment rates in previous years.
IPR education must be promoted among all the educational institutions because mostly the students are not aware of the IPR and hence use plagiarized content not even recognising their blunders. They should be made aware of the difference between "taking reference" and "copying".
Universities and educational institutions should arrange seminars and workshops on IPR awareness.
Recent step by Indian Government
The Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal had launched the Kalam Program for Intellectual Property Literacy and Awareness campaign (KAPILA) on 15th October 2020.
Purposes of KAPILA:
To create awareness regarding IPRs in Higher Education Institutions.
Evolution of credit course in IPR.
Enabling IP protection of inventions arising from the students and teachers of Higher Education Institutions.
Development of a smooth IP filing system.
The competitive edge around the world is increasing and along with it people are becoming aware of IPR comparatively a decade before but mere awareness is not enough, comprehension is also important therefore an accurate root of knowledge is a requirement.
 Mohua Das & V Narayan, Myntra forced to revamp logo after outrage, Jan 31, 2021, at 14:08 IST https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/business/india-business/myntra-forced-to-revamp-logo-after-outrage/articleshow/80607986.cms  Shailaja Tripathi, KAPILA: Government launches campaign to create awareness regarding Intellectual Property Rights, Feb 5, 2021, at 13:51 IST https://www.jagranjosh.com/current-affairs/kapila-government-launches-campaign-to-create-awareness-regarding-intellectual-property-rights-1612512863-1
~ Author - Anushka saini
~ Co-Author - Ashir gulati