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Indian IP office gets a new head

The head of India’s IP Office, PH Kurian, is to step down in less than a fortnight and will be succeeded by Chaitanya Prasad

Prasad, a civil servant in the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, will take over as Controller General on March 12.

Kurian had launched an ambitious programme of reform at the IP office, winning the support of many IP professionals. In July he asked officials to carry out an investigation into corrupt staff at the Office who had allegedly been making false promises that they can speed up the examination of trade marks.

He announced his intention to leave the office in June last year, less than halfway through his five-year term.

Speaking at Managing IP’s India IP Forum today, Kalpana Reddy, first secretary for intellectual property at the US embassy, said that the IP Office had been “transformed” under Kurian to become one that is responsive and timely.

“It will be important for his successor to build upon the programme that been begun at the office”.

Sujit Thakur of Zeus IP told Managing IP that he welcomed the fact that Prasad, like Kurian, is another product of India’s elite civil service training ground, the Indian Administrative Services. But he added: “His stature matters, but it is the intent to reform that is most important.”

Additional reporting by Peter Ollier, New Delhi

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