When the matter came up before Justice Muralidhar yesterday, Addnl Solicitor General (ASG), AS Chandiok stated in open court that the government had just appointed Justice Prabha Sridevan to the post of Chairman, IPAB. Justice Sridevan was one of the judges who had decided the Novartis Gleevec dispute, where Novartis had mooted a challenge to the constitutional validity and TRIPS compatibility of section 3(d). The court held that the section was perfectly constitutional. However, it ducked the TRIPS issue, holding that it had no jurisdiction to hear it.
We are also given to believe that DPS Parmar of the Delhi Patent Office has been appointed as the technical member (patents) to the IPAB. And that V Ravi has been appointed as technical member (trademarks).
Counsel for APPA and leading IP attorney, Pratibha Singh informs SpicyIP that, in an earlier writ petition involving the IPAB that she was involved in, the government had represented to the court that that they would constitute more IPAB benches, if the situation so warranted. Through the present writ petition, she wishes to hold them to this representation and activate more benches, in view of the alarming pendency rates at the IPAB.
And for those who may have forgotten, our writ challenging the constitutionality of the IPAB is still pending in the Madras High Court. And the government is yet to file its response.