Directorate of Handloom and Textiles plans to register traditional Assamese ‘Gamusa’ for Geographical Indication (GI) tag – a form of Intellectual Property Right (IPR).
A GI tag helps keep the identity of the product intact. The process has been initiated to get the GI tag. ‘Gamusa’ being an integral part of the state’s culture and tradition is a priority for the Directorate and they have engaged Patent Information Centre (PIC) of the government-run Assam Science Technology and Environment Council (ASTEC) to take the required steps.
Due to unethical trade practices, the traditional gamusa is facing a serious threat. The market is flooded with power loom gamusas posing a threat to local artisans who make traditional gamusas.
It has become extremely difficult to differentiate between powerloom gamusas from the traditional handmade ones. Even the Regional Office of the Textiles, Kolkata, a recognized laboratory for testing samples of clothes has failed to make the differentiation in handmade and powerloom gamusa. It is expected that the GI registration certificate will prevent plagiarizing of gamusa by outside factories.
The Directorate of Handloom and Textile has proposed that the GI registration should cover all varieties of gamusas like the phulam (embroidered), the anakata (the gamusa woven for some special rituals without effecting any cut), the tiyoni (the gamusa used while bathing) varieties, etc.