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The refurbishing of the IP administration in India, which was set in motion with the advent of the National IPR policy in 2016, has effectively used the steppingstones of procedural and administrative reforms to bring the much-awaited results for the stakeholders. When it comes to IP creation, India has jumped five places to rank 52 in the Global Innovation Index 2019, up from the 57 it had in last year’s rankings.

The Annual Report issued by the Office of the Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trademarks (CGPDTM) for the financial year 2017-18 illustrates the achievements gathered by the Indian Trademark Office (TMO) in the past year. The improvements introduced during the last two years such as amendments of Patents and Trademarks Rules, digital reforms and reengineering of IP procedures have resulted in an upswing performance, decreased pendency and elevated rates of disposal of IP applications. This year has witnessed incredible achievements in terms of efficient performance and delivery of IP services as well as IT -enabled functioning on the part of the IP office.

Strengthening of institutional mechanism, digitization of records, business process re-engineering and augmentation of human resources were all aimed to match and rather ambitiously surpass the standards set by many IP Offices across the world. This process is ongoing and soon we will witness more advanced IP office functioning in India. Some significant highlights of the annual report are as under:



  • 47, 854 applications filed as compared to 45,444 last year exhibiting an increase of 5.3%.
  • Domestic filings increased from 29.2% last year to 32.5%. 15,550 applications were filed by Indian Applicants as compared to 13,219 applications last year, showing an increase of 18%.
  • In the field of Information Technology, WIPRO Limited secured the first place followed by Tata Consultancy Services. In the domain of Scientific and Research & Development Organizations, CSIR topped the rank followed by DRDO.
  • 32, 304 applications were filed by foreign applicants. Qualcomm Incorporated topped the list followed by Koninklijke Philips N.V.


  • Number of patent applications examined tremendously increased to more than double the applications in the last year i.e. by 108.2%.
  • Grant and Disposal
  • 13, 045 patents granted as compared to 9,847 granted last year, showing an increase of 32.5%.
  • Disposal of applications increased by 57.6%. 47,695 applications were disposed of as compared to 30,271 applications last year.
  • 56,764 patents are in force. 46,618 statements on working patents were received out of which 12,246 were reported as working.

Working of the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT)

The Indian Patent Office as ISA/IPEA has met 99% timelines in issuing International Search Reports (ISRs) under PCT. The timelines in sending Record Copies to the International Bureau of WIPO within the prescribed time limit of 4 weeks from the International Filing Date has also improved remarkably from 66% last year to 96% this year.

Electronic payment gateway for PCT application fees was introduced to avoid delay in transmission of fees for PCT applications to International Bureau and International Searching Authorities.

U.S. topped the ranking of the countries using PCT route for India followed by Japan and Germany.



  • Online filing increased to 86%.
  • Class 5 (pharmaceuticals, veterinary and sanitary substances etc.) applications once again topped the rank with 13.93% share in overall filing, followed by Class 35 (Advertising, business management and related services) applications with 9.73% share in overall filing.
  • The filing trend, however, dipped marginally with 2, 72,974 applications filed as compared to 2, 78,170 applications last year.
  • Out of 2, 72,974 applications filed this year, 25,307 were filed by foreign applicants. United States topped the list of foreign applicants followed by China.

Examination and Publication

  • The pendency of examination of trademark applications has continued to be less than 1 month.
  • Procedural reforms in examination have resulted in increased acceptance of trademark applications from less than 10% to about 46% at the initial stage.
  • 4, 23,030 applications published as compared to 333,673 publications last year.

Registration and Disposal

  • 20.3% increase in issuance of trademark registrations. Over 3, 00,000 trademarks have been registered as compared to 2, 50,070 registrations last year.
  • 5, 55,777 applications disposed of as compared to 2, 90,444 applications last year, augmenting the overall percentage by 91.4%.

Working of the Madrid Protocol

WIPO notified 47,263 international registrations to TMO in the year 2017-18, and TMO communicated 26,883 provisional refusals based on examination and 833 provisional refusal based on third party oppositions to the WIPO. The Grant of Protection was issued in respect of 16, 925 marks under international registration.

The TMO received 841 Indian origin applications for international registration, out of which 751 applications were verified certified and forwarded to the WIPO. Out of these applications, 562 marks were registered at the level of the WIPO.

Details of Opposition/Rectification Applications Filed at Various Offices in the Year 2017-18

S. No. Place of Hearing Oppositions/Rectifications filed Cases Disposed off
1. Ahmedabad 6,228 6,161
2. Chennai 7,414 7,361
3. Delhi 17.065 16,633
4. Kolkata 2,421 2,406
5. Mumbai 9,591 8,970
6. IR Division 731
  Total 43,450 41,535



  • 11,837 applications filed as compared to 10, 213 applications last year showing an increase of 15.9%; number of applications originating from India accounted for 70% of the total filing.
  • Leading Indian Applicants include inter alia Sabyasachi Couture, Relaxo Footwear Limited, Nectar Biopharma Pvt. Ltd., Godrej & Boyce Mfg. Co. Ltd., Mahindra & Mahindra Limited and Hero Moto Corp Limited.
  • United States topped the list of foreign applicants followed by Republic of Korea. Leading Foreign Applicants include Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., LG Electronics INC, Koninkilijke Philips N.V., The Gillette Company LLC, Google LLC, Honda Motor Co. Ltd and Mitsubishi Electric Corporation etc.


  • Pendency in the examination of new applications continued to be around 1 month.

Registration and Disposal

  • 7,904 designs registered as compared to 8,276, exhibiting an increase of 21.07%,
  • 10,788 applications disposed of as compared to 8,332 last year, showing an increase of 29.48%.


Computerization and reengineering of the registration processes has immensely improved the performance in the copyright domain. An increase of 7.4 % has been recorded in the filing of copyright applications. Pendency in examination has remarkably reduced to less than 1 month during the year (it was 13 months prior to March 2017). Number of copyright registrations has seen an unprecedented upswing of 456%, whereas final disposal of applications surged by 631%.


As demonstrated above, profound initiatives taken by the Office of the Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trademarks (CGPDTM) have shown a remarkable improvement in the numbers achieved this year. Continuing at this pace, the dream of having an efficient IP Ecosystem augmenting the industrial growth in the country and featuring in top ten of Global Innovation Index (GII) is not far from being accomplished.

The Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trademarks endeavours to ensure timely delivery of IP services in a transparent manner and provide protection of IP rights in a reasonable period by simplifying the procedures, strengthening of manpower and create digital environment. Further initiatives are intended to be implemented for improved functioning and service delivery and resolving public grievances effectively.


Date: August 06, 2019


Name: Priya Mehta
Designation: Indian Patent Agent and Advocate

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