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A Very Belated SpicyIP Weekly Review (6th to 12th October, 2014)


The Week with the NBER Paper Situation

spicyip weekly reviewThis week saw the emergence of a spicy controversy surrounding an NBER working paper which concluded that Indian firms differentiate drug quality based on destination of consumption, to the detriment of African countries. The Indian government had a shocking response to this working paper – they decided to sue for defamation. We carried a set of posts to cover this whirlwind situation, one on the conclusions in the paper itself, followed up by another post on the defamation claim (this is particularly worrying against academia, but it’s not like this blog is new to such claims anyway) and a third guest post written by the authors of the article themselves, presenting their views on the subject. These posts collectively form our SpicyIP Highlight of the Week and are worth a read for IP, free speech, public health and drug policy enthusiasts.

The week however had started off with Gopika’s post on the intersection between Ss.33 and 30 of the Copyright Act in the Bombay High Court Case of M/s Leopold Cafes v. Novex Communications which dealt with the issue of whether unregistered third parties can license music and other copyrighted works. Swaraj then uploaded a post detailing a set of resources on IP/Tech/Media that are available online with notable hubs being the NLU Delhi’s CCG, Nalsar’s TLF and many others. This would serve as a welcome resource for students, teachers and researchers alike.

Rupali then reported on the PIL filed by The All India Drug Action Network (“AIDAN”) against the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority’s, withdrawal under the direction of the government, of the internal guidelines dated 29.05.2014 issued by it for the fixation and revision of prices of drugs. Shamnad Sir posted next on a UK decision invalidating a patent for a drug that treated psoriasis, on the grounds of obviousness. The drug was the combination of known cures for psoriasis with a solvent.

Spadika followed this up with a post on the denial of an injunction by a Hyderabad Trial Court in favour of Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) in a suit against generic manufacturer Mylan regarding the export of HIV Drug Atazanavir to Venezuela. Gopika followed this with a tidbit on the Supreme Court’s dismissal of the SLP in the trademark matter between Anchor Health and Proctor & Gamble.

Our next post was a guest post by Shashank Mangal and Kamlesh Mali, students of ILS Pune on the “Tango Punch” trademark dispute at the Bombay High Court regarding the use of a part (‘TANGO’) of a registered trademark ‘TANGO PUNCH’ by the defendant (selling similar product). In the post, they analyse the decision and emphasize the interpretation of S.17 and S.30 (1) (a) of the Trade Marks Act, 1999 which form the thrust of the order. Mathews gave us the last post of the week with Justice G.S. Patel’s decision in ITM Trust & Ors. v. Educate India Society, dealing with the ambit of ‘honest concurrent use’ in Trade Marks Act, 1999.

International Stories:

  1. The IPKat reports on the new EPO guidelines and what they mean to IP practitioners here.
  2. PatentlyO carried this really nice post comparing the position of software patents in the US and the UK.
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Thomas J. Vallianeth

Thomas is a final year law student at the National Law University, Jodhpur pursuing a B.Sc. LL.B. (IP Hons.) course. His first exposure to IP law was at a workshop that he attended in High School and ever since then, he has pursued a keen interest in the field. However, his real interests lie in the interfaces between Technology Law and IP, with an active interest in the Open Source movement.

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