Hyderabad: The Indian patent office will recruit 500 patent examiners over the next five years as it aims to clear a backlog of 1.3 lakh pending applications, a top official said.
The Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trademarks and Registrar of Geographical Indications, which grants patents and trademarks, currently employs 80 patent examiners across four offices in the country. Training is under way for 150 more to join its rolls, patent office head Chaitanya Prasad said on Friday.
India received 43,000 patent applications, 8,300 applications for design innovation and 194,000 trademark applications in 2012-13, Prasad said on the sidelines of a conference on intellectual property rights organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry.
India has the highest number of applications per patent examiner in the world, Prasad said, hoping newer recruits will reduce the burden on their colleagues, and help bring down the time taken to process patent, design and trademark applications.
The patent office currently takes three to five years to clear applications in the request for examination category, which Prasad said will be reduced to one year after the new recruits come on board.
The electrical and mechanical sectors account for the maximum number of patents filed, followed by the pharmaceutical and biotechnology fields, he said.
Patent examiners typically hold a master’s degree in engineering or the sciences and are categorised as Class I officers in the union government.