Rasagola war: GI Registry asks Odisha to file documents afresh

Chennai/Bhubaneswar: The sweet-bitter war over the origin of famed sweetmeat rasagola is far from over as Geographical Indication (GI) Registry of India today asked the Odisha-based activist to submit documents once again, who had challenged the GI tag being given to the Banglar Rosogolla.

The Registry in its hearing today held the case ‘abandoned’ as the members who had filed the documents on behalf of Odisha had submitted the documents late.

The West Bengal counterpart argued that Bhubaneswar-based Regional Development Trust (RDT) submitted the documents a week after its stipulated time and should not be accepted. The members of RDT produced the courier receipts in favour of their argument that they had mailed it long before. But, it reached the Registry late.

In view of this, the Chennai-based Registry directed Odisha to file documents once again within one month.

“Lawyers are representing West Bengal government whereas the Odisha government hasn’t provided any lawyer in this case. We are an NGO. We haven’t got any financial assistance from neither government nor any corporate to fight the rasagola case. Had our state government contested it, the outcome could have been different. Anyway, our members will meet on Sunday to chalk out further course of action,” said vice-chairmen of the Trust Santosh Kumar Sahu told Sambad English.

We presented the documents in favour of our arguments. But, the Registry was not convinced. It asked us to submit the documents once again. We are mulling to file a re-petition, Sahu added.

It may be recalled here that the Bhubaneswar-based NGO had challenged the GI tag being awarded to ‘Banglar Rosogolla’. In 2017, West Bengal was given the GI tag for its variety of the spongy sweet delicacy made from cotton cheese.

Two years later in July this year, Odisha got the GI tag for Odisha Rasagola.

The Chairman of the Trust Ramesh Chandra Sahu had claimed that West Bengal got the tag by falsifying documents.

Further, he had submitted historical evidence citing the history of rasagola dating back to 800 years and its link with the 12th century Jagannath temple in Puri.

The Registry on October 21 this year had concluded the hearing and had posted the next hearing to today.

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