T.N.’s Dindigul lock and Kandangi saree get GI tag. Two well-known products from Tamil Nadu — Dindigul lock and Kandangi saree — have been given the Geographical Indication (GI) tag by The Geographical Indications Registry in Chennai. Dindigul Lock and Kandangi SareeDindigul locks

  • The Dindigul locks are known throughout the world for their superior quality and durability, so much so that even the city is called Lock City.
  • Government institutions such as prisons, godowns, hospitals, and even temples use these locks instead of other machine-made ones.
  • More than 3,125 lock manufacturing units are limited to an area of 5 km in and around Dindigul. They are concentrated in Nagelnagar, Nallampatti, Kodaiparailpatti, Kamalapatti, and Yagappanpatti.
  • The abundance of iron in this region is the reason for the growth of the industry.
  • There are over 50 varieties of locks made by the artisans using raw materials such as MS flat plates and brass plates procured from the nearby towns, including Madurai and Salem.
  • The most interesting ones are the Kolaikaran pootu (burglar lock) which is designed in a manner that a knife would come out if a wrong key is inserted.
Issue: Despite unique features, the lock industry for the last few years has been gradually dying due to stiff competition from Aligarh and Rajapalayam. The Kandangi sarees
  • Highly quality cotton from Coimbatore is used to make the saree. The main characteristic of the saree is its bright colors that hold strong.
  • The original Kandangi saree is manually made using a winding machine, loom, shuttle, and bobbin. It is a team effort of the families who live in the town of Karaikudi and it forms part of their livelihood
  • The Kandangi sarees are manufactured in the entire Karaikudi Taluk in Sivaganga district.
  • They are characterized by large contrast borders and some are known to have borders covering as far as two-thirds of the saree which is usually around 5.10 m-5.60 m in length.
  • Worn in summer, these cotton sarees are usually bought by customers in bulk.
Issue: The market has a plethora of sarees that are woven in other parts of the State and look akin to the Kandangi saree. What is a geographical indication?
  • A geographical indication (GI) is a sign used on products that have a specific geographical origin and possess qualities or a reputation that are due to that origin.
  • In order to function as a GI, a sign must identify a product as originating in a given place.
  • In addition, the qualities, characteristics or reputation of the product should be essentially due to the place of origin.
  • Since the qualities depend on the geographical place of production, there is a clear link between the product and its original place of production
 For what type of products can geographical indications be used? Geographical indications are typically used for agricultural products, foodstuffs, wine and spirit drinks, handicrafts, and industrial products. What rights does a geographical indication provide? A geographical indication right enables those who have the right to use the indication to prevent its use by a third party whose product does not conform to the applicable standards. For example, in the jurisdictions in which the Darjeeling geographical indication is protected, producers of Darjeeling tea can exclude the use of the term “Darjeeling” for tea not grown in their tea gardens or not produced according to the standards set out in the code of practice for the geographical indication. However, a protected geographical indication does not enable the holder to prevent someone from making a product using the same techniques as those set out in the standards for that indication. Protection for a geographical indication is usually obtained by acquiring a right over the sign that constitutes the indication. Also read: Kandhamal Haldi Gets Geographical Indication Tag