The Orissa High Court has served notices on Odisha and West Bengal on a public interest litigation (PIL) seeking scrapping of the Geographical Indication (GI) tag to ‘Banglar Rasogolla’. The Odisha government has earlier this year applied for GI tag for Odishara Rasagolla. The notices were served on the Odisha chief secretary and the West Bengal State Council of Science & Technology, besides the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) and the Chennai Intellectual Property Office (IPO), according to local media report.
The PIL had been filed by Susanta Sahu, secretary, Punya Utkal Foundation, and Santosh Kumar Sahoo, editor of Odia Parba, on February 5 seeking GI tag for ‘Odishara Rasagola’ scrapping the one received by West Bengal. The petitioners have alleged that West Bengal got the GI tag for ‘Banglar Rasogolla’ on November 14 last year by furnishing false evidence and data.
“Rasagolla is the ancient identity of Odia people. It is the pride and identity of the people of Odisha. Our argument before the court was that the tag that has been given to the state of West Bengal is illogical and we want the GI tag for Odisha since it’s our identity,” advocate Siddharth Prasad Das told IANS.
While West Bengal got the GI tag for ‘Banglar Rasogolla’, the Odisha government has filed an application for GI tag for ‘Odishara Rasagolla’. The Odisha government has backed the claim that rasagolla originated in the state and since ancient days it was part of a ritual prasad served to Lord Jagannath at the Puri temple.
The Odisha Small Industries Corporation Ltd (OSIC) filed the application with the GI Registry in Chennai in February this year. The GI Registry office had on March 16 issued a show-cause notice to the West Bengal State Food Processing and Horticulture Development Corporation asking it why the tag given to ‘Banglar Rasogolla’ should not be withdrawn, said sources.