The famous Cuttack Rupa Tarakasi of Odissa and Banglar muslin of Bengal has been given the Geographical Indication (GI) tag. 

Cuttack Rupa Tarakasi (Silver Filigree)

  • Rupa Tarakasi is one of the most exquisite silver crafts. In this work of craft, silver bricks are transformed into thin fine wires (tara) or foils, from which silver filigree is made with all designs (kasi).
  • Filigree has been traditionally associated with fine craftsmanship and luxurious design in classical jewellery.
  • According to historians, there is every possibility that the Tarakasi work reached Cuttack from Persia through Indonesia some 500 years ago by sea trade. 

What is G.I Tag?

  • A geographical indication (GI) is a sign used on products that have a specific geographical origin and possess qualities or a reputation that are due to that origin. 
  • The first product in India to be accorded with GI tag was Darjeeling tea in the year 2004-05.
  • Tamil Nadu (61) has the highest number of GI tags compared to other States (2024).

Banglar Muslin

  • The Banglar muslin is one of the popular traditional handloom craft of Bengal.
  • This finest sort of muslin is made of cotton, which are spun to create threads that maintained tensile strength at counts (above 300 counts and up to 600 counts) i.e., higher than any other cotton products.
  • Muslin is not a Persian word, nor Sanskrit, nor Bengali, so it is very likely that the name Muslin was given by the Europeans to cotton cloth imported by them from Mosul.
  • In 2013, the traditional art of weaving Jamdani muslin in Bangladesh was included in the list of Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO.

Law Governing GI Tag:

  • GIs are covered under the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property.
  • Governed by the WTO’s Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).
  • GI tags are issued as per the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act,1999. This tag is issued by the Geographical Indication Registry under the Department of Industry Promotion and Internal Trade, Ministry of Commerce and Industry.

Benefits of GI Tag

  • Enhance the market value and competitiveness of the products
  • To promote the local culture, tradition, and heritage
  • Contribute to the socio-economic development
  • support the conservation of biodiversity, natural resources, and traditional knowledge of the region

Challenges of GI Tag

  • Lack of awareness and knowledge
  • Lack of adequate infrastructure and facilities
  • Lack of effective enforcement and monitoring mechanisms
  • Lack of coordination and cooperation among various stakeholders 

Way Forward

  • Providing more financial and technical support
  • Strengthening the legal and institutional framework
  • Enhancing the market access and visibility of GI products
  • Encouraging more research and innovation on GI products
  • Fostering more collaboration and partnership among various stakeholders

Also Read

INS Jatayu at the Lakshadweep Islands