Govt opens Tatkal window for faster patents to startups

NEW DELHI: In a bid to encourage start-ups to patent their technologies, the government has slashed the fee by up to 80% and opened a special (Tatkal) window to expedite clearances for them as well as entities that route their global patent applications via the Indian Patents Office. Applying to the special window will attract up to three times of normal fees.

This is the first time the government has opened a window for faster patents along with efforts to speed up application clearing process. Currently, it takes five-to-seven years to clear a patent application and the government is now looking to reduce this to around two-and-a-half years, which would be even lower in case of those taking the Tatkal route.
“The move is aimed at popularising India as a patent filing hub so that more companies file applications in India,” Rajiv Aggarwal, joint secretary in the department of industrial policy and promotion, told reporters, adding that the benefits of modified rules will be available only to new applicants.
Under the faster clearance route, application fees for individuals and start-ups have been kept at Rs 8,000, while for companies, it could be as much as Rs 60,000. Under normal circumstances, initial patent filing cost ranges between Rs 1,600 and Rs 8,800. To clear the backlog of patent applications, the revised rules provide for refund of fees in case of withdrawal of an application.