Breaking News: Ramkumar’s Patent Stayed by the IPAB

The IPAB handed down a 10-15 page decision recently staying the operation of Ramkumar’s patent covering dual SIM phones. Readers may recall that a similar order had been passed by the IPAB earlier. However, Ramkumar challenged that order before the Madras High Court, claiming that this order had been passed without hearing him. The High Court subsequently vacated the ex parte order and asked that the IPAB hear Ramkumar. Thereupon, the IPAB proceeded to hear Ramkumar and stuck to its decision to stay the operation of the patent. However, this time, it appears to have done so, after listing out some reasons.

As we noted in a previous post, this novel remedy of the IPAB is legally questionable. Much along the lines of the Novartis decision where it rejected a patent covering a highly priced drug on the ground that such a patent would violate public order, the IPAB appears keen on soaring high on flights of legal fancy. We’ll post again with details of the order.

Shamnad Basheer

Prof. (Dr.) Shamnad Basheer founded SpicyIP in 2005. He's also the Founder of IDIA, a project to train underprivileged students for admissions to the leading law schools. He served for two years as an expert on the IP global advisory council (GAC) of the World Economic Forum (WEF). In 2015, he received the Infosys Prize in Humanities in 2015 for his work on legal education and on democratising the discourse around intellectual property law and policy. The jury was headed by Nobel laureate, Prof. Amartya Sen. Professional History: After graduating from the NLS, Bangalore Prof. Basheer joined Anand and Anand, one of India’s leading IP firms. He went on to head their telecommunication and technology practice and was rated by the IFLR as a leading technology lawyer. He left for the University of Oxford to pursue post-graduate studies, completing the BCL, MPhil and DPhil as a Wellcome Trust scholar. His first academic appointment was at the George Washington University Law School, where he served as the Frank H Marks Visiting Associate Professor of IP Law. He then relocated to India in 2008 to take up the MHRD Chaired Professorship in IP Law at WB NUJS, a leading Indian law school. Later, he was the Honorary Research Chair of IP Law at Nirma University and also a visiting professor of law at the National Law School (NLS), Bangalore. Prof. Basheer has published widely and his articles have won awards, including those instituted by ATRIP, the Stanford Technology Law Review and CREATe. He was consulted widely by the government, industry, international organisations and civil society on a variety of IP issues. He also served on several government committees.

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