NRI Vinod Gupta, who has funded a string of educational institutes in India, is investing $2-2.5 million on setting up the country`s first school on intellectual property rights (IPR).
The Rajiv Gandhi School of Intellectual Law will be set up at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kharagpur, from where Gupta graduated in 1967. The human resource development ministry has given its go-ahead.
The institute will provide world-class legal education in the intellectual property space, leading to post-graduate degrees in law and later doctorate programmes, Gupta, who is probably the only American Indian to stay overnight in the White House as a personal guest of former American president Bill Clinton, told reporters here.
With an annual intake of 150, the institute is expected to attract students from both within the country and abroad, Gupta added. Admissions will begin next July.
(The institute) will probably cost $2-$2.5 million initially, spread over two years. We expect the institute to be self-sustaining in two years, said Gupta, who chairs info USA, Inc., a $300 million company that deals with information databases for businesses and employs over 2,000 people across the US.
The Nebraska-based firm offers access to a database of 200 million consumers and 13 million businesses.
Intellectual property covers a gamut of issues ranging from patent laws and procedures, copyrights, information technology, intellectual property rights entrepreneurship and technology transfer.
I feel a huge need for intellectual property legal experts in India over the next few years. The US has over 100,000 lawyers specialising in IPR and here we barely have a thousand, said Gupta.
As we`re part of World Trade Organization and we`re producing all this new work, we have to protect it or these will be stolen, he added.
There is a tremendous demand for intellectual property lawyers both in India and abroad, and the new institute will provide a host of opportunities and create a pool of world-class lawyers for the growing Indian industry, IIT Kharagpur director Shishir Dube said.
The Vinod Gupta Charitable Foundation is setting up the institute. It established the Vinod Gupta School of Management at IIT Kharagpur in 1993 that produces about 120 management graduates annually.
The foundation established the Ram Rati Gupta Women`s Polytechnic, named after Gupta`s mother, at his home village of Rampur Maniharan in Uttar Pradesh, in 2000.
Clinton, during his visit to the village in 2002, had laid the foundation stone for the William Jefferson Clinton Science and Technology Centre that was inaugurated last month.