Trademark

Some Reflections on the WTO Panel Ruling in the Plain Packaging Dispute: Pulling the Rug from under Your Legs and Missed Opportunities – Part II


In Part I of this two-part guest post on the WTO Panel Report in the tobacco plain packaging dispute, Adarsh argued that the Panel didn’t get everything right in holding that the Tobacco Plain Packaging Measures (TPP measures) do not violate the TRIPs Agreement and discussed three points on which he believes the Panel went wrong. In Part II of the post below, he argues that the Complainants also didn’t raise all the right arguments and missed some important ones. Some Reflections…


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Trademark

Some Reflections on the WTO Panel Ruling in the Plain Packaging Dispute: Pulling the Rug from under Your Legs and Missed Opportunities – Part I


We are pleased to bring to you a two-part guest post by Adarsh Ramanujan on the WTO Panel Report in the tobacco plain packaging dispute. Adarsh is an advocate primarily assisting clients as a litigation attorney. He has recently started his own counsel practice with offices in Delhi and Chennai after having spent considerable time with Lakshmikumaran & Sridharan at their New Delhi and Geneva offices. He obtained his B.Sc. LL.B. (Hons.) degree (Gold Medalist) from National Law University, Jodhpur  and…


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Patent

The Morality of Sexual Pleasure: Patent Office Training?


(This post has been co-authored with Prof. Shamnad Basheer) Yesterday, we highlighted a problematic Patent Office decision, rejecting a claim to a sexual stimulation device (a unique vibrator) on the grounds of immorality under Section 3(b) of the Patents Act. More specifically, the Controller held: 1. That an apparently innocuous looking sex aid device to further intimacy between couples is “obscene” 2. That the said device is not “useful or productive” 3. That the law does not take kindly to…


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Others

SpicyIP Weekly Review (August 6-12)


Thematic Highlight Prashant wrote a special report on certain regulatory restrictions passed by the Ministry of Heath and Family Welfare; the Ministry announced that the Karnataka Antibiotics and Pharmaceuticals Ltd.(a PSU) would be the sole authority for manufacture and supply of the pregnancy drug, oxytocin. In his report, he examines a Himachal Pradesh HC judgment which suggested the need to restrict manufacture of oxytocin to the public sector and claimed that adverse effects were caused by oxytocin. He also examines…


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Others

Merits of Mediation: Leading Mediator Offers to Resolve Indian IP Dispute for Free


A friend of mine informs me that a leading international mediator (one of the top 5 in the world) is willing to mediate a high stakes IP dispute for free. Any takers? Please let me know soon. He will be in Bangalore soon and can do this between August 23rd and  25th. If interested, please email me at <[email protected]> We’ve reflected on the merits of mediation in previous posts here and here. I’m given to understand that this creative win-win approach is being…


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Trademark

In a Trademark Registration Dispute, Supreme Court Arrives at Correct Destination, Albeit By Adopting a Legally Suspect Path


In an interesting judgment delivered late last month, a Supreme Court (“Court”) bench consisting of Justices A.K. Sikri and Ashok Bhushan ruled on the principles to be adopted for resolving trademark disputes concerning goods or services falling within the same class(s). While the Court appears to have arrived at the correct destination, I share Eashan Ghosh’s view that the Court could have adopted a more legally robust path in arriving at that destination. [Long post ahead!] Factual matrix The Respondent,…


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Patent

Sexual Pleasure is Immoral: So Says the Indian Patent Office!


Don’t believe me? Read this decision where a patent claiming a sexually stimulating device (a unique vibrator) was denied on the ground that it was an “immoral” invention under section 3(b) of the Patents Act. In this case, the applicant, Standard Innovation Corporation (a Canadian entity) claimed a creative vibrator, branded now as “We-Vibe”. Unlike other vibrators, this does not really look like a vibrator, but is a rather interesting U-shaped device: sort of like a pair of headphones! Better still,…


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Competition Law

Star India and Sony in Troubled Waters over CCI Order


[Warning: Long post follows!] The CCI, in a recent order dated 27th July, 2018, passed under Section 26(1) of the Competition Act, 2002 (“the Act”), instructed the Director General to investigate claims of price discrimination made by the Informant, Noida Software Technology Park Limited (“NSTPL”) against Star India Pvt. Ltd. (“Star India”), Sony Pictures Network India Pvt. Ltd. (“Sony”) and Indian Broadcasting Foundation (“IBF”). Factual Overview NSTPL is a distributor of TV content and it uses the new Head-end in…


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Trademark

Delhi HC Awards Punitive Damages for Infringement of Christian Louboutin’s Red Sole Trademark


Justice Yogesh Khanna of the Delhi High Court, in his judgment dated July 31, 2018 (“Louboutin-3”), has granted permanent injunction and punitive damages against a Delhi based retailer for infringing the famed ‘Red Sole’ trademark of Christian Loubutin. The order appears to have taken a diametrically opposite view to the one taken by another judge of the same Court, Justice Valmiki Mehta, who barely a month ago, had held that Christian Louboutin’s ‘Red Sole’ Trademark was not eligible for trademark…


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Patent

SpicyIP Tidbit: Novartis Pursues Aggressive Patent Strategy with Respect to Drug Vildagliptin


According to Times of India, Novartis obtained favourable court orders restraining five Ahmedabad-based pharma companies from manufacturing its patented drug for diabetes, Vildagliptin. Further, citing validity of its patent till 09 December 2019, Novartis moved the commercial court in Vadodara to ensure that four other companies do not get into production of the drug. It is reported that Novartis approached the Court after obtaining the requisite information from the State Government.


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