As on the year 2020, Gorakhpur got a Geographical Indication (GI) tag for its traditional terracotta craft by the Geographical Indication Registry. In tune with ‘Vocal for Local’ pitch the Union government adopted ‘cluster-based approach’[1]. The application was filed by one Laxmi Terracotta Murtikala Kendra and Human Welfare Association in 2018. Gorakhpur is famous for its ornate terracotta horse and elephant. The manufacture of terracotta craft is one of the high antiquity other than pottery.

The objects and artifacts of terracotta include things which are of domestic use and are very popular for religious and magical purposes along with children’s toys, earthen pots and diyaz. Terracotta art flourished in India during the Indus Valley Civilization. The most common material which was used in the Indus basin was clay. Black polished pottery was found at Taxila may be attained as an example of finished pottery of historic time (Terracotta Handicraft Gorakhpur)[2]. Articles elephant, horse, bullock carts, bells, candle stand, elephant stools for decorative objects, tortoise, Lord Ganesha, chandeliers etc. is exported to several countries[3]. Terracotta toys are displayed in open market in Gorakhpur-Kushinagar road.

Terracotta is also the product for Gorakhpur in U.P. government’s One District One Product scheme, which seeks to promote regional art, provide employment to people and attract investment[4]. The scheme has also increased G.D.P. and improved U.P.’s economy considerably. The entire work is done with bare hands and natural colours are used by the artisans.

Geographical Indication indicates that particular goods which originate from a country, region or locality and have some special qualities or reputation which are attributable to its place of origin. Natural factors like raw materials, soil, regional climate, temperature, method of preparation add to the special characteristics. The connection between that good and place becomes so famous that any reference to that place reminds a person of that food or product  produced there.

For example-Scotch wiskey, Darjeeling tea, Nagpur oranges , Champagne, Bikaneri bhujia. The 1st country to afford a protection to geographical indication through a legal instrument was France. According to section 2(1)(e) of the Geographical Indication Act, 1999, geographical indication means goods such as agricultural goods, natural goods or manufactured goods as originating or manufactured in that region or locality or country. The Geographical Indication Registry is established in Chennai under the Controller General of patents, Design &Trademark. The first product in India to be accorded with GI tag was Darjeeling tea in 2004-05. At the International level, GI is governed by WTO’s agreement on TRIPS. Geographical Indication also helps in the development of rural areas by attracting tourists, natural resources are preserved, the product reaches maximum people. There are three major ways by which geographical indication can be protected viz sui generis systems, collective marks and Techniques concentrating on business practices, including administrative product approval schemes.


To prevent the unauthorised use of the product, it is very important to protect that product through geographical indication. It plays an important role in the lives of both producers and consumers. The essential purpose of using GI tag is that it provides a legal defense that encourages the producers to produce and sell more. The farmers selling goods under GI safeguard seem to face fewer issues and competition from false sellers in the market. In fact, almost all the states in India yield some kind of unique product. I hope, in the next few years, India can produce more such products which can be known to the world and increase the GDP of the country.

Image source:

The hindu

[1] Vocal for Local – Uttar Pradesh’s Gorakhpur Sets an Example in Terracotta Toys and Products (thetruepicture.org), visited on 08-07-2021 at 14:29hrs.

[2] Dr. Sana-Terracotta pottery of Gorakhpur in Crises: A Case Study on Issues and Challenges of Potter’s Community in Gorakhpur, (PDF) Terracotta pottery of Gorakhpur in Crises: A Case Study on Issues and Challenges of Potter’s Community in Gorakhpur | International Research Journal Commerce arts science – Academia.edu, visited on 08-07-2021 at 18:58hrs.

[3] IBID.

[4] Sanskar Srivastav-What is Gorakhpur’s Terracotta, What is Gorakhpur Terracotta? – Quora, visited on 08-07-2021 at 19:26hrs.

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