“protection Of Plant Varieties And Farmers Rights Act-2001”

“Protection Of Plant Varieties And Farmers Rights Act-2001”


It has been deemed necessary to recognize and protect the rights of the farmers in respect of their contributions made at any time in conserving, improving, and making plant genetic resources available for the development of new plant varieties in order to facilitate the establishment of an effective system for the protection of plant varieties, the rights of farmers, and plant breeders. The Indian government adopted a sui generis approach when it passed "The Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers' Rights (PPV&FR) Act, 2001." 
The laws of India are not only compliant with the ‘International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV), 1978’, but they also contain enough protections for farmers' and public sector breeding institutes' interests. The law acknowledges the roles played by farmers and commercial plant breeders in plant breeding activities and calls for TRIPs to be implemented in a way that advances the unique socioeconomic interests of all parties involved, including the public and private sectors, academic institutions, and farmers with limited resources.

Goals of The 2001 PPV & FR Act:

1.    To create a framework that effectively protects plant varieties, farmer and plant breeder rights, and to promote the creation of new plant varieties.
2.    To acknowledge and defend farmers' rights with regard to their ongoing efforts to preserve, enhance, and make available plant genetic resources for the creation of new plant kinds.
3.    Protecting the rights of plant breeders will help the nation's agricultural development along with encouraging public and private sector investment in research and development to create new plant types.
4.    Encourage the development of the nation's seed business, which will guarantee that farmers have access to high-quality seeds and planting supplies.
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Rights Granted By The Act:

Pet Owners' Rights:

The protected variety may only be produced, sold, marketed, distributed, imported, or exported by breeders. Breeder may designate an agent or licensee and pursue a civil remedy in the event that their rights are violated.

Researchers' Rights:

Under the Act, researchers may conduct experiments or conduct research using any of the registered varieties. This includes using a variety as a starting point for the development of another variety, but repeated use requires prior consent from the registered breeder.

Agriculture Rights:

A farmer can save, use, sow, re-sow, exchange, share, or sell his farm products, including seed, of a variety protected under the PPV&FR Act, 2001, in the same way s/he was able to before the act's passage, with the caveat that the farmer is not permitted to sell branded products. 
A farmer can register and protect his variety in the same way a breeder of a variety can. Farmer’s varieties can also be registered as extant varieties.

Actualization Of The Act:

The Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers' Rights Authority was founded on November 11, 2005, by the Department of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare, Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, to carry out the Act's requirements. The Authority's Chief Executive is the Chairperson. According to a notification by the Indian government, the Authority comprises 15 members in addition to the Chairperson (GOI). Eight of them are ex-officio members representing various Departments and Ministries, three are from SAUs and the State Governments, and the Central Government designates one representative for each of farmers, tribal organizations, the seed industry, and women's organizations involved in agricultural activities. The Authority's ex-officio Member Secretary is the Registrar General.

Functions Of The Authority In General:

•    Registration of fresh plant varieties, existing varieties, and essentially derived varieties (EDV)
•    Establishing guidelines for the DUS (Distinctiveness, Uniformity, and Stability) test for new plant species
“Protection Of Plant Varieties And Farmers Rights Act-2001”
•    Creating descriptions and records of registered types
•    Infrastructure for mandatory cataloguing of all plant varieties
•    Farmers' variety documentation, indexing, and cataloguing
•    Praising and rewarding farmers, farming communities, especially tribal and rural communities involved in improvement and conservation
•    Conserving the genetic resources of commercially important plants and their wild cousins
•    Upkeep of the national gene bank and the national register of plant varieties.
•    The listing of varieties i.e. Maintenance of National gene Bank 
If a variety fundamentally meets the criteria for distinctiveness, uniformity, and stability, it may be registered under the Act (DUS). For the aim of registering varieties, the Central Government publishes notifications in official gazettes naming the genera and species. The Central Government has announced 157 crop species for registration thus far. Plant variety registration applications must be accompanied by the registration fee specified by the authority. The following are the registration costs for the various varieties:


Types of Variety

Fees for Registration


Extant Variety notified under section 5 of the Seeds Act, 1966

Rs 2000/-


New Variety/Essentially Derived Variety (EDV)/ Extant Variety about

which there is common knowledge (VCK)

  • Individual Rs. 7000/-
  • Educational Rs.10000/-
  • Commercial Rs.50000/-


Farmers Varieties

No Fee

As stated in the Plant Variety Journal of India of the Authority and Gazette of India dated 15.06.2015, the registration of a variety is renewable subject to payment of the yearly and renewal fee.
With a mandate to preserve and multiply reference collections, example varieties, and generate databases for DUS descriptors in accordance with DUS criteria for each crops, the DUS Test Centers Authority has informed DUS test Centers for various crops. 

Registration Certificate:

The duration of the certificate of registration is six years for other crops and nine years for trees and vines. Under the condition that the total period of validity does not exceed 18 years for trees and vines from the date of variety registration, 15 years from the date of variety notification under the Seeds Act of 1966, and 15 years in all other cases from the date of variety registration, it may be reviewed and renewed for the remaining period upon payment of renewal fees.

Sharing Of Benefits:

One of the most crucial components of farmers' rights is benefit sharing. Benefits sharing is provided by Section 26, and claims may be made by Indian citizens, businesses, or non-governmental organizations (NGOs) founded or established in India. Breeders will deposit the money into the Gene Fund in accordance with the extent and kind of the claimant's genetic material's usage in the production of the variety, as well as the variety's commercial utility and market demand. The applicant will get the deposited sum from the National Gene Fund. In order to encourage claims for benefit sharing, the Authority additionally publishes the certificate's contents in the PVJI.

Community Rights:

1.    It is meant to make up for the substantial role that local communities had in the development of the varieties that have been registered under the Act.
2.    Any individual, group of individuals, governmental or non-governmental organization may submit a claim for participation in the evolution of any variety on behalf of any village or local community in India at any designated center.

Conventional Nations:

Convention country refers to a nation that has ratified an international agreement for the protection of plant varieties, to which India has also acceded, or a nation that has enacted legislation to protect plant varieties, in accordance with which India has signed agreements granting the citizens of both nations access to plant breeders' rights. If someone submits an application for the registration of a variety in India within a year of the date on which the application was submitted in the convention country, that variety will be deemed to have been registered under this Act as of the application date in the convention country and will be treated as such for the purposes of this Act.

Appellate Tribunal For The Protection Of Plant Varieties:

•    The PVPAT's jurisdiction will be exercised by the Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB) until the PVPAT is constituted, according to a temporary clause. As a result, a Technical Member was appointed, and the Plant Varieties Protection Appellate Tribunal (PVPAT) was created. The Tribunal accepts appeals of all orders or judgments made by the Registrar of Authority regarding registration of varieties and registration as an agent or licensee. 
•    Additionally, the Tribunal will hear appeals of any and all orders or judgments made by the Authority regarding benefit sharing, the cancellation of a mandatory license, and the payment of compensation. The High Court will hear cases challenging PVPAT rulings. The appeal must be resolved by the Tribunal within a year.

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