CAG criticises Kerala Ayurveda Patent Cell’s inaction

Sunday, Apr 12, 2015,19:45 IST By metrovaartha A A A

Thiruvananthapuram | The traditional Ayurvedic knowledge in Kerala remain unprotected as the literature digitised by the state’s ‘Patent Cell’ has not been included in the database of the Centre’s TKDL, a CAG report has said.
The Traditional Knowledge Digital Library (TKDL) was a collaborative maiden Indian venture between the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, Ministry of Science and Technology and Earth Sciences and Department of Ayush to prevent misappropriation of traditional knowledge belonging to India at International Patent Offices.
The Comptroller and Auditor General report for the year ending 2014, placed in the state Assembly recently, said no traditional knowledge and formulations, digitised by the state’s Patent Cell, were incorporated in the database of TKDL. Therefore, protection of traditional knowledge digitised by the Patent Cell was not ensured, it said.
The Kerala government constituted the Patent Cell in July 2003 in the Directorate of Ayurveda Medical Education (DAME) to take steps for acquiring patent rights on Ayurveda concepts. The Cell, envisaged to conduct survey, identify, collect and digitise Ayurveda literature documents, has digitised as many as 2505 formulations and published five books.
But, no patent rights for any of the formulations digitised were acquired as of December 2014, it said. Quoting the state government, the report said the issue was raised before Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, Government of India which is dealing with the Intellectual Property Rights, and response from the Centre is awaited.
The fact remains that the traditional knowledge digitised by the Patent Cell remained unprotected as of December 2014 as the database was not linked to the TKDL and thus the work of the Cell became infructuous, the report added.

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