Patent ( Amendment rules ) 2020 | Current affairs - Contemporary legal development | UPSC Law Option
UPSC LAW OPTIONAL CURRENT AFFAIRS | PAPTENT ACT
An anti-disclosure amendment that hits public health
THE RECENT DEVELOPMENT | The central government recently published the patent (Amendment) Rules, 2020
THE RELEVANT LEGAL BACKGROUND
In exchange of a 20-year patent monopoly granted to an invention, India’s patent law imposes a duty on the patentee to commercially work the invention in India to ensure that its benefits reach the public.
A failure to perform this duty could trigger compulsory licensing or even subsequent revocation of the patent under the patents act, 1970.
Section 146(2) of the Patents act, 1970, requires every patentee and licensee to submit to the patent office an annual statement explaining the extent to which they have worked the invention in India.
This disclosure is to be made in the Form 27 format as prescribed under the patent Rules, 2003. This was amended by the latest rules
WHAT THE NEW AMENDMENT DOES ? It amends the format of a statement that patentees and licensees are required to annually submit to the patent office disclosing the extent to which they have commercially worked or made the patent inventions available to the public in the country.
WHAT WAS ITS EFFECT ? The Amendment has significantly watered down the disclosure format, as the amended form removed the requirement of submitting a lot of important information, thus damaging the core essence of the patent working requirement and the form 27 format.
The form now requires the patentees and licensees to provide only for the following information:
a)Whether the patent has been worked or not;
b)If the invention has been worked, the revenue or value accrued in India from manufacturing and importing the invention into India
c)If it has not been worked, reasons for the same and the steps being taken towards working.
REASON FOR THE AMENDMENT | This Amendment was made in pursuant to a PIL filed by Shamnad Basheer before the Delhi High Court in 2015.
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