Category Archives: Overlaps in IP

Overlaps in IP Patent Plant Variety Protection

The Seed(y) Saga: Who Makes Law in India?


Well, if Prabhakar Rao’s response to my op-ed in the Hindu is anything to go by, it would appear that is the executive (govt) that makes law in India. Never mind that the constitution says otherwise; and vests this power with our Parliament! Mr Rao clearly has his own constitutional handbook, drawing from which he notes: “As clarified by the government in the IPR Policy 2016, only the PPVFR Act, 2001 governs IP rights for transgenic varieties.” Firstly, whatever be…


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Overlaps in IP Patent Trademark

Three Birds, One Stone: Inphase Power Technologies v. ABB India


In a fascinating case before the Karnataka High Court: Inphase Power Technologies v. ABB India (read the order here), Justice P.S. Dinesh Kumar passed an order confirming the misappropriation of confidential information, patent infringement, and hold your breath – trademark infringement as well! Not to be left out, there were arguments advanced of alleged copyright infringement too, which were ultimately not taken up by the Court. This case is significant due to the parties involved, as there is an ongoing…


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Overlaps in IP Patent Plant Variety Protection

The NSAI’s new IP strategy in its dispute with Monsanto


The National Seed Association of India (NSAI), comprising mostly of Indian seed companies, has published on its website a series of documents outlining its IP strategy in its dispute with Monsanto. As explained in our earlier posts available over here, here and here, some of the biggest Indian seed companies like Nuziveedu (whose chairman heads NSAI) are engaged in a high stakes battle with Monsanto over the technology licensing agreements between both parties. The history of this dispute can be…


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Competition Law Overlaps in IP Patent

My views on Session on ‘Open Standards’ in SpicyIP Consilience, 2016


 In the recently concluded SpicyIP Consilience 2016 Conference at NLS, we had an interesting session on Open Standards, FRAND and Royalty-Free models (pertaining to licensing of Standard Essential Patents). Mr. Rajiv Choudhary, Prof. Yogesh Pai, Mr. Navneet Hariharan and Prof. Natasha Nayak spoke in this session. The session discussed some interesting issues pertaining to: a) creation of value by royalty free standards; b) working of FRAND; c) creation of value by standards; and d) royalty-free model vis-a-vis FRAND model. If you…


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Overlaps in IP Trademark

Countering the Menace of Counterfeits


In a development that brings to light some rather interesting issues, the Indian Government has accused Chinese companies of counterfeiting goods legitimately manufactured in India. Noting that large Indian brands such as Godrej, Dabur and Raymond have been at the receiving end of this large-scale counterfeiting, the Government has reportedly told Parliament that it has raised this issue with the appropriate agencies in China. As this article notes, this intervention could not have come at a better time, in light…


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Copyright Others Overlaps in IP Patent Trademark

Freedom 251: Pull the other one (it’s got Bells on)! (Part II)


The first post in this series discussed the reasons the Freedom 251’s pricing was so significant, and discussed the factors that affect a smartphone’s price. This post discusses the controversies the Freedom 251 has found itself mired by, due to its supposed defiance of these factors. The most interesting controversies, of course, are the IP ones! The Curious Controversies First off, the device shown to the media reportedly has Adcom trademarks, concealed with white paint. A Hindustan Times review sports…


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Innovation Others Overlaps in IP

GCIP Day 1 Session 2: Perspectives from Developing Countries


This post is part of SpicyIP’s coverage of the Fourth Global Congress on Intellectual Property and the Public Interest. The second session of Day 1 featured some extremely fascinating insights from across the developing world, adding fresh glosses to familiar themes in some cases, as well as radical new ideas from the bottom up in others. First up was Prof. Anil Gupta, co-ordinator of the path-breaking Honey Bee Network, which aims to connect small innovators (who seem to be all-pervasive…


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Others Overlaps in IP

Exclusive rights to cultural heritage? That’s a stretch!


Last week, the internet was abuzz with news that students of the University of Ottawa had managed to shut down a free on-campus yoga class for fear of “cultural appropriation”. There have been several well-written responses to the whole thing, but this one from Eugene Volokh stands out from the rest. In three pithy paragraphs, Volokh identifies the root cause of the problem: the mindset that culture can somehow be treated as property, defined by the same “right to exclude” mentality…


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Overlaps in IP

Trade Secrets and the Right to Information: Thoughts on Ferani Hotels v. State Information Commissioner [Part II]


In my previous post, I discussed the Bombay HC’s ruling in Ferani Hotels v. State Information Commissioner and Ors., in which the Petitioner attempted (unsuccessfully) to prevent the Bombay Municipal Corporation from disclosing its real estate development plans under an RTI application. As I mentioned there, the Supreme Court has never had to issue a decision on S. 8(1)(d) of the RTI Act, which provides for the protection of trade secrets and other information of commercial confidence from disclosure. The…


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Others Overlaps in IP

Trade Secrets and the Right to Information: Thoughts on Ferani Hotels v. State Information Commissioner [Part I]


A recent judgement [PDF] from the Bombay High Court has thrown the spotlight on the interplay between IP protection and the Right to Information Act. Over the course of two posts, I’ll summarise the judgement and try to engage with some of the issues that inhabit its penumbra. By their very nature, the values sought to be protected by IP law seem to be at odds with those sought to be protected by the RTI Act. The former is aimed…


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