The Annual Report 2016-2017, released by the Office of the CGPDTM has provided a detailed report of the recent changes in India’s IP regime. This post is a brief summary of the said report and an analysis of whether the recent changes have contributed in achieving the goal of the National IPR Policy 2016 which is ‘Creative India; Innovative India’.

During 2016-17, the total number of applications filed was 3,55,393 (a decrease of 0.37% from that of the previous year). The applications filed for Patents, Designs and Trademarks have decreased whereas applications filed for GI and Copyright have increased. During the year 2016-17, the total revenue generated was Rs. 608.31crore, which is about 4% higher than that of the previous year, while total expenditure was only Rs. 129.8 crore.


A total of 45,444 applications have been filed, 30,271 have been disposed of and 9,847 have been granted. The number of applications filed has decreased by 3.2% and grant of patents has increased by 55.3%. Online filing of patents has increased to 90%.

Foreign Applications:

The U.S has topped the list of foreign Applicants with 8,981 applications followed by Japan with 3,399 applications. Qualcomm Incorporated has filed the highest number of applications (1,840) amongst the list of foreign companies. It was followed by Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd which has filed 706 applications. The total number of Foreign Patents granted is 8,532.

Domestic Applications:

The state of Maharashtra with 3,513 applications continued to occupy the first position and Tamil Nadu, with 2,003 applications has occupied the 2nd position, Delhi with 1066 applications has occupied the 3rd position. No patent applications have been filed from Daman and Diu, Meghalaya and Sikkim. IIT has topped the list of Indian applicants by having filed a total of 400 patent applications collectively. It is elating to note that CSIR has occupied 3rd position having applied 225 applications and BHEL ranking 5th in the list has filed 174 patent applications. A total of 1,315 patents have been granted to Indian Applicants, out of which highest number of patents were granted to CSIR (104) followed by DRDO (80).

Field of patents:

The highest number of patent applications has been filed in the field of Electrical, Electronics and Related Subjects (19,640). The least number of patent applications has been filed in the field of Traditional Knowledge (84).



A total of 2,78,170 trademark applications have been filed, 5,32,230 have been examined, 2,50,070 have been registered and 2,90,444 applications have been disposed. The number of applications examined increased by 98.7%, whereas the number of registrations of trademarks showed an increase of 284.5%. Online filing of trademark applications has increased to 80%.

Foreign Applications:

The number of applications from foreign applicants has decreased to 11,440. The U.S continues to top the list with 3,792 applications and China occupies the second position with 1,360 applications. WIPO has notified 33,788 international registrations seeking protection of trademarks in India.

Domestic Applications:

The number of applications filed by Indians has decreased from the previous year to 2,66,730. The highest number of applications were filed at the Delhi branch of the Registry (1,04,249). Maharashtra has occupied the first position among the states, with 63,070 applications. Delhi with 51,563 applications has occupied the 2nd position.

Field of trademark:

The largest number of applications 40,578 was received in respect of goods in Class 5 (Pharmaceuticals, Veterinary and Sanitary Substances etc.).



A total of 10,213 design applications have been filed, 11,940 examined, 8,276 registered, 8,332 disposed out of which 56 applications were disposed through refusal and abandonment. Pendency of the examination of new applications has reduced from 8 months in March 2016 to one month in March 2017.

Foreign Applications:

There were 3,921 foreign applications filed, in total. The U.S has occupied the top position having filed 792 design applications followed by Japan with 508 applications. In the category of companies, the top position is occupied by Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. with 180 applications and 241 registrations.

Domestic Applications:

The number of domestic applications is 6,292. Maharashtra has occupied the first position with 1,659 applications. Delhi occupied the 2nd position with 1,013 applications. The leading Indian applicant is Sabyasachi Couture with 308 applications and 387 registrations.

Field of Designs:

Among the applications originating from India, 684 have been filed under Class 09 (Packages and containers for the transport or handling of goods).



During the year 2016-17, the Registry has received 32 GI Applications and 1,548 GI Authorised User Applications out of which 1,466 have been registered. A total number of 34 Geographical Indications were registered and 28 applications were examined.


A total number of 16,617 applications were received, 16,584 applications were examined and, after examination, the discrepancies observed in respect of 12,988 new applications have been communicated to the Applicants for rectification. The Copyright Office has started displaying the applications received during the month on its website and the applicants can track the status of their application online.


The e-filing application module has been integrated into the revamped SICLDR website. Under SICLD Act, an e-journal has been published on the website of Semiconductor Integrated Circuits Layout Design Registry entitled “Semiconductor Integrated Circuits Layout Design Journal”.



  1. Reforms for automation and digitilisation

Provision for auto-allocation of requests for examination and automation of process for registration and renewal has been made. First Examination Reports and Registration certificates are sent through e-mail. The provision of SMS Alert service to stakeholders regarding Examination reports has been made. Comprehensive e-filing facility is available with payment gateway facility and it has been made mandatory for patent agents to file their applications online.

  1. Reforms to simplify the process of registration

Amendments to the Trade Mark Rules 1999 notified in March 2017, has reduced the number of Forms from 74 to 8 and provided for the filing of single application form for all types of trademark applications. Provision for filing extensions for submission of Affidavit and Evidences have been removed so as to speed up the disposal.

  1. Reforms to empower Start-ups

To facilitate the implementation of the Startup India scheme, 80% fee concession in patent and 50 % in trademark has been provided through the patents and trademarks amendment rules.  The Amendment in the Patent Rules, 2003 notified in 2016 has provided for the expedited examination of patent applications filed by start-ups.

  1. Reforms to encourage registration

10% concession in fees has been made available for trademarks through the Trade Marks (Amendment) rules 2017, in line with patents and designs.

  1. Reforms to expedite the process of prosecution

Provision has been made for video conferencing of hearings. The number of Adjournments of hearing has been restricted to two with the provision that each adjournment shall not be for more than thirty days.

  1. Reforms for speedy redressal of grievances

Stakeholders meetings were conducted to receive feedback and suggestions. Feedback mechanism has been set up as a separate gateway to enable stakeholders to lodge feedback, suggestions, and complaints.

  1. Reforms to ensure the quality of reports

A quality control system has been put in place to ensure the quality of examination reports.

  1. Reforms for the dissemination of information

IPO website has been redesigned to improve contents and ease of access. IP data on a real-time basis is available in respect of filing and processing of Patents, Designs, Trade Marks and Geographical Indications. A comprehensive online search system with full-text-search capability, which was already in practice, has been updated.

  1. Reforms for IP training and awareness

IPR help-desks and online guidance system through e-mail are available at each IPO location. The office organized and participated in public outreach activities with industrial organizations like CII, FICCI, ASSOCHAM. Several orientation programmes have been conducted to train examiners. RGNIIPM alone has conducted 99 programmes on IPR- training, and awareness.

  1. Reforms to ensure international co-operation

International Programmes for the Asia Pacific and BRICS Countries were organised. A bilateral meeting was held between CGPDTM and the JPO Commissioner. Members of the Chinese IP office had visited India. An MoU was signed by the UKIPO and the DIPP. IP Day was celebrated on 26th April 2016 on the theme “Digital Creativity: Culture Re-imagined” on the occasion of which, a meeting was held between CGPDTM and the European Patent Office (EPO) to review the bilateral co-operation activities.



It can be stated with certainty that the reforms made during the year 2016-17 have contributed to an extent, in realising the objective laid down by the National IPR Policy, 2016. India has thus taken few steps forward to achieve its goal of ‘Creative India; Innovative India’ in the said year, but the ultimate goal still remains several leaps away. There are certain lacunae in the IP mechanism that must be filled. Despite, the existence of a quality control system, the quality of certain Examination reports continue to be mediocre. Several examination reports have been flawed. The transparency of the system continues to be deserving of criticism. 164 requests were received by the Patent office alone for providing information under the RTI Act, and appropriate action is said to have been taken on all the requests. But, in fact, several RTI requests seem to have reached deaf ears. To ensure transparency, appropriate and timely responses should be provided by the respective registries to RTI requests. The manpower structure must be strengthened. Only 1 Patent Agent has been registered in the year 2016-17 and there is no permanent man power recruited for the Semi-Conductor and Integrated Chips Registry which is a huge drawback that must be addressed. The over-all registration and the prosecution processes must be expedited further.

It is time for India to take more decisive steps to efficiently protect intellectual property in order to stride towards growth. As Richard Posner stated,

The future of the nation depends in no small part on the efficiency of industry, and the efficiency of industry depends in no small part on the protection of intellectual property.’