India’s Pursuit Soft Diplomacy of Intellectual Property Protection for Yoga, Herbal Medicines, and Traditional Knowledge at the WTO

  • Mojdeh Jamali Hessari and Prof. (Dr.) Maruthi TR
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  • Mojdeh Jamali Hessari

    Ph.D. Scholar (Biotechnology) at Garden City University, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

  • Prof. (Dr.) Maruthi TR

    Professor and Chairman, Dean Faculty of Law at Department of Studies in Law, University of Mysore. Mysore, Karnataka, India

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India, renowned for its prowess in the generic drug sector, is strategically engaging in soft diplomacy to protect its cultural heritage, specifically focusing on yoga, herbal medicines, and traditional knowledge at the World Trade Organization (WTO). Expressing concerns about potential exploitation, India draws from past successes in preventing the patenting of turmeric and neem, highlighting the need for WTO assurances. The nation's proactive stance involves creating an extensive database cataloging traditional medicines, plants, and yoga positions. Challenges arise in determining ownership, especially in the context of oral traditions and diverse sources. India aligns itself with emerging powers like China and Brazil, seeking global recognition for a framework governing the utilization of native resources. Yoga, a global phenomenon, faces challenges with patents, copyrights, trademarks, and geographical indications. The article explores the legal landscape, emphasizing India's efforts to protect yoga through the Traditional Knowledge Digital Library. India proposes measures at the WTO to require patent applicants to declare the country of origin, seek permission, and share benefits. The judicial approach reflects the complex intersection of yoga and intellectual property, considering copyright, trademarks, and patents. India's diplomatic efforts intertwine with its soft power, leveraging the global popularity of yoga as a cultural heritage. The article concludes by emphasizing the delicate balance needed to protect cultural heritage while fostering global collaboration and recognition.


Research Paper


International Journal of Law Management and Humanities, Volume 6, Issue 6, Page 2733 - 2748


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