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GI protection sought both for the khadi product and the process

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2014-07-29 19:00:00 – Chennai

The Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Attorney Association seeks Geographical Indication tag for Khadi as it stands as a fabric of the freedom struggle and a political weapon in Mahatma Gandhi's Swadeshi movement. Khadi is likely to get statutory protection as a GI-tagged product unique to the Indian subcontinent.

 

Khadi is not mere a piece of cloth but has now become a way of life. At one time, the spinning wheel was the symbol of India's poverty and backwardness. Mahatma Gandhi turned it into a symbol of self-reliance and non-violence.

 

Various khadi and Gandhian forums will join the IPR Attorneys Association, said association president and IPR attorney P Sanjay Gandhi, adding that GI tag for khadi has been sought under Class 24 of goods categorized as 'textiles and textile goods (handicraft).

 

The application said khadi should be protected as a distinctive Indian hand-woven cotton fabric and safeguarded against spurious claims.

 

Explaining how khadi or khaddar became a household product with the rapid spread of Swadeshi movement, the application said the aim of boycotting foreign clothes and goods was at the heart of the mass movement.

 

In 1918, Mahatma Gandhi having realised the seriousness of dependency on foreign materials and tendency of looking down upon manual labour power advocated spinning and weaving as keys to self-reliance and self-government...It was for economic, cultural and social reasons and not merely political that Gandhi established the Khadi movement, the GI application said.

 

Staking a GI tag for khadi products made all across India, the IPR Attorneys Association said that it was applying on behalf of all manufacturers and producers in order to protect their interests in various states. "Khadi is the only fabric that can be used for production of India's National Flag, according to the Flag Code of India, 2002.

 

The application states that Khadi is a versatile fabric and its colours were skin-friendly and the material was handspun and hand-woven cotton.

 

The application sought GI protection both for the khadi product and the process. As for its uniqueness and khadi also helps generate employment for rural population and women at their dwelling places, that too at very low capital cost.

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