Biodiversity plays a vital role in sustaining conservation of nature and development of bio-technology industry. Biodiversity is basic to progress in improving the productivity of plants, animals, fishes and all living organisms. Conservation of biodiversity ensures ecological stability and also involves protection of socio-ecological interest of the people actively associated with conservation.
Therefore, the Government of India enacted Biological Diversity Act, 2002, to ensure the conservation of biological diversity in India, sustainable use of its components and fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the use of biological resources.
The current Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) regime is encouraging commercialization of seed development, monoculture, and protection of new plant varieties, microorganisms, and genetically modified organisms. According to this Amendment Act, 2002 the duration of the term of patent has been extended to 20 years for all product and process patents.
Now microorganisms will be patentable subject in India. In addition, new plant varieties will get PBR certification in India as India has joined recently in UPOV (1978 Act). Earlier India has also passed Plant Protection Bill to develop a sui generis system (a system of its own). The deposit of biological materials has also been included in compliance with the Budapest Treaty.
With the growing demands for the bio-products in the recent decades, commercialization of the Traditional knowledge associated with the biodiversity has been on growing pace all over the world.