Patent laws to be simplified to promote research, development: Centre

Representational Image. Photo: iStock/ Daniela Jovanovska-Hristovska

New Delhi: The Centre revealed its plans to make the Indian Patent Act, 1970 more simplified and research-friendly to encourage development and innovation in the country.

Addressing the CII Global Science, Research and Innovation Summit, Akhilesh Gupta, senior adviser at the Department of Science and Technology, said while India grants an average of 23,000 patents per annum, it lacks the culture of patents filing.

Gupta, who is also secretary of the Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB), said the time duration for filing of patents and the same being granted is three years in India against the global average of two years.

He said the central government is looking to simplify the patent laws for product oriented results.

According to the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020, all funding agencies of research in the country will merge into a single entity- National Research Foundation (NRF)- with an objective to catalyse quality research in the country. It will have twin objectives of basic research and high-quality innovation.

Referring to around 0.69 per cent of the budget being spent on R&D (research and development) in India, Gupta urged the private sector to pitch in with higher research allocation to match and support the government for a win-win proposition.

The senior official said the Department of Science and Technology (DST) was working in collaboration with state governments to completely re-orient and transform the R&D infrastructure of 350 state universities, which are in a very poor condition.

Earlier, Parvinder Maini, scientific secretary in the office of Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India, urged the industry, academia and start-ups to join hands to co-produce and co-develop world class products and solutions, as the era of working in silos is over now.

She underlined that the huge gap of the low research and development budget of India was almost due to non-participation of the private sector to take big risks in emerging and cutting-edge technologies.

Maini said out of 90,000 start-ups in India, only 12,000 are technology-based and about 3,000 of them are deep tech start-ups.

She added that if the industry does not lend funding support to innovative and bright ideas, India will miss the bus in the research and development sector, which is now on its way to full bloom.

(With inputs from PTI)

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