SpicyIP Tidbits

1. Bajaj-TVS spat revs up again India’s second largest two-wheeler manufacturer Bajaj Auto Limited (BAL) on Saturday has asserted that the company is going to take necessary steps so that its intellectual property rights (IPR) remain protected. BAL is currently involved with TVS Motor Co over a patent issue involving the BAL’s Digital Twin Spark-ignition (DTS-i) which it claims TVS has copied in its new 125cc bike Flame. Flame is expected to hit the market by next month. Refuting Bajaj’s…

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Biological Diversity

The Biological Diversity Act

How many of you have heard of the Biological Diversity Act, 2002? I had heard about the Act long ago but somehow never got down to actually trying to understand it and when I did get down to it while researching for this post I was quite stunned with both, the importance of this Act and the seemingly muted discussions of such an important piece of legislation in the mainstream press. Unlike The Patent Act which is considered the ‘sexier’…

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IP and Traditional Medicine.

The lush flora in the State of Karnataka, besides providing the calming green to the eye, offers a manna of medicinal and therapeutic prescriptions. Popularly hailed as the Garden City of India, Bangalore the State Capital of Karnataka has woken up to the fact that the vegetation in the forests of the Western Ghats region of the State has great potential in contributing to the burgeoning Indian Traditional Medicine(TM) and Complementary/Alternative Medicine (CAM) industry, now fast gaining ground on the…

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Babel’s back

It’s a story that’s been doing the rounds for some days now. Internationalised Domain Names, or IDNs, have come home: it will soon be possible to own domain names in a handful of Indian languages, including Hindi, Tamil, Bengali, Punjabi and Sanskrit. The National Internet Exchange of India (NIXI) announced the launch of IDNs in five to six languages in the first phase of an ambitious project beginning early next year. (NIXI is a non-profit government agency that serves as…

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Government’s foolish proposal vetoed by Natco

Readers will recollect an earlier post, where I lamented on a government proposal to have the IPAB decide the Novartis patent matter without a technical member. Thankfully, a sensible Natco has opposed this move. The Hindu reports: “Hearing on the Novartis AG’s plea to exclude a Technical Member of the Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB) from hearing its statutory appeals against rejection of its patent application was on Tuesday adjourned to November 6 by the Madras High Court. Proposal opposed…

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US Enablement Case: Relevance for Novartis Patent Case in India

Harold Wegner’s timely email updates brought an excellent opinion by Judge Kimberly Moore to my attention. I’ve sat in her court once and she is fabulous (a razor sharp mind combined with a keen sense for the broad policy issues–she’d been an academic prior to her career as a judge). Hal’s email states: “Today in Pharm. Resources, Inc. v. Roxane Laboratories, Inc. (Fed. Cir. 2007), (Moore, J.), in her first important pharmaceutical opinion, the newest member of the court authored…

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Spicy Tidbits & Events

Prizes instead of patents for pharmaceuticals Senator Sanders introduced the Medical Innovation Prize Fund Act of 2007 into the US Congress. In essence the idea is to provide a large fund of money to provide government backed incentives (‘prizes’) to help direct pharmaceutical research into needed areas. The aim is to separate innovation from the proce of products. The prizes will be substituted for patent monopolies (though patents would still play a role in who gets each prize). The team…

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The Uneasy Alliance between Basmati & IP

Once upon a time many years ago an evil prince tried to pirate our ‘queen of rices’ – ‘basmati rice’ – but luckily our ever vigilant government challenged the pirates in an adversarial duel (3 years late!) and won back our ‘basmati’ swearing to protect this ‘queen of rices’ from the bio-‘Pirates of America’. ‘Basmati’ – Patents and trademarksI know the above introduction sounds much too over-dramatized, over-romanticized for an IP blog but those sentences are quite accurate of the…

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Businesslawyer.in, a fabulous initiative by students of the National Law School of India Univ (Bangalore), my alma mater, carried a short note of mine on the Novartis case. I’ve reproduced it below: “Friends, Indians, Countrymen, lend me your ears; 
I come to bury the Madras High Court judgment, not to praise it. The Madras High Court decided a landmark case involving Novartis’ famed anti- cancer drug, Glivec. Ignoring the bard’s dictum that brevity is the soul of wit, the court…

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karnataka scores once again in registration of a ‘geographical indication’ Of late Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) in India have been getting their fair share of bad publicity. Amongst others, the Novartis dispute, as also the yoga patenting dispute were especially damaging to the image of ‘intellectual property’ in the Indian psyche. But as the Prime Minister Dr. Singh (or was it Yeats?) famously said ‘If winter comes, can spring be far behind?’ So true for the world of Indian IP…

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