ABOUT THE ORGANISERS
LawCuriae is a venture aiming to serve all the law students as well as the law aspirants by means of online platform. The main idea is to assist every law student by providing them the basic facility of learning online. At times there are students who find it difficult to understand what they are being taught in their respective law schools. We wish to provide a platform where all the subjects are taught, through videos being uploaded on YouTube by some of the best faculty, in order to help law students understand the concepts in a better way and additionally, unlike Law Schools/ Colleges, to provide not only theoretical knowledge but also a Practical Perspective to implement that theoretical knowledge. Through this venture we also strive to make sure that students will be given an opportunity to improve or develop their legal skills, such as Mooting, Debate, Paper Presentation, Article Publishing etc, without the institutional backing. In other words where there is no role of college.
ABOUT THE WEBINAR
As we all are aware a patent is a legal right that the government of a country grants to an individual or an inventor with a view of excluding other people from selling, making, or using their invention for a certain period of time. Under section 2(1)(m) of the 1970 Patent Act of India, the term “patent” can be defined as a legal protection for any invention and Invention under section 2(1)(j) means a new product or process involving an inventive step and capable of industrial application.
When a person owns a patent for any invention he has exclusive rights towards that invention as the patent owner and may prohibit any other person who is a non-owner from extracting any benefits out of the patented invention. But this right is not perpetual; a patent protection generally lasts for 20 years from the date of filing of the application and post this period the invention becomes free for everyone to use without requiring a license.
Now why should one patent his or her inventions? Here are few of many reasons why:
- A patent protects your invention against ‘copying’; this way another person will not be able to steal your idea or concept.
- Patenting will increase your market position by preventing others from bringing products identical to yours into the market.
- Lower competition = steadier position = greater investments.
- You might not be able to commercialize your invention but there might be others who can turn your idea into a commercial commodity and by licensing your patent to them you can earn licensing fees.
These are just some reasons as to why patenting is absolutely a necessary tool for inventors and entrepreneurs out there.
To give you a broader insight lets us cite a couple of cases:
India-US Basmati Rice Dispute:
In the late 1990s an American company RiceTech was granted a Patent by the US patent office to call the ‘aromatic rice’ grown by them, outside India, as “Basmati”, since basmati means ‘queen of fragrance’, and India objected to it. Since India has been one of the major exporters of basmati to several countries such a grant by the US patent office was likely to affect its trade. The real Basmati rice originated from the lands of India and Pakistan and what RiceTech had developed was a clone, they claimed that their rice was substantially photo-period insensitive, had a higher yield, had characteristics superior to those of good quality basmati rice. Due to the grant of this patent RiceTech was able to not only call its aromatic rice; basmati’ within the US, but also label it Basmati for its exports. They were able to capture the whole US trade market. They had the exclusive use of the term “Basmati”. They had monopoly on breeding 22 farm-bred Pakistani basmati varieties with any other varieties in the western hemisphere. And they had proprietary rights in the seeds and grains from any crosses. With this both the countries India and Pakistan suffered economic and Global trade losses and lost their global market shares. The Government of India logged an appeal with the United States Patent and Trademark office and submitted sufficient evidence upon which RiceTech took back 15/20 claims and also took back the claim on the name ‘Basmati’, but the damage was already done. Had India already acquired a Patent for a product that was originally ours, we would have saved ourselves from such great losses.
The Turmeric case
Turmeric is primarily considered a tropical herb grown in eastern India. Its powder is widely used in India as a medicine, food ingredient, and coloring. It is also used as an essential ingredient in the cooking of many Indian dishes. As a medicine, it is used to heal wounds and rashes and is used in medical cosmetics. In 1995, two American Indian researchers, Suman K. Das and Hari Har P Cohly of the University Of Missippi Medical Center, issued a US patent to “promoting healing of a wound by administering Turmeric to a patient afflicted with the wound.” For using turmeric as a medicine to “heal wounds. ” This meant that they had obtained exclusive rights to this haldi drug and could earn millions of dollars. In the name of the patent, the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) filed a request for revision, challenging the patent on the basis of the state of the art. The CSIR did not provide that many Indians are already using turmeric to heal wounds, although all Indian households have known about turmeric for centuries. Fortunately, it could provide documentary evidence of traditional knowledge, including an ancient Sanskrit text and an article published in 1953 in the Journal of the Indian Medical Association. The patent was revoked in 1997, after making sure there was nothing new. CSIR questions the fact that turmeric has been used for thousands of years to heal wounds and is used as a medicine, so this is not a new invention. Dr. R.A. Mashekar (CSIR CEO) publishes 32 excerpts from various magazines to substantiate the case. In 1997, the USPTO rejected all six patent claims contemplated in the CSIR filings. Therefore, the patent was declared void.
The inventors chose to pursue the matter on the basis that “the powder and the paste had different physical properties, that is, bio availability and absorbency, and therefore those skilled in the art would not expect, with a reasonable degree certainly, a powdered material would be useful in the same application as a paste of the same material. The USPTO, however, rejected this objection and stated that the paste and powder were equivalent to the references submitted by the CSIR. In 1997, the applications were rejected a second time and in 1998 the reconsideration certificate was issued.
We hope this helps you understand the importance of patenting.
Moving to the next step is how we obtain a patent and how to get it registered, what are the requirements for an invention to be qualified as patentable invention, and once the patent has been obtained what steps to take in the event of dispute arising with regards to the patent. The following webinar will shed a light on all these aspects and many more. With the massive growth and development in the field of intellectual property rights the future of Patents is very bright. This webinar will be of tremendous knowledge not only for law students but also for researchers, developers, entrepreneurs and every inventor with creative mind out there. We sincerely look forward to having you join us in this webinar event and making it a noteworthy event.
The webinar will be hosted on Google Meet
Date: 12th September 2020
Time: 4:00 pm (IST)
THE SPEAKER OF THE DAY
Ms. Isha Sharma
- Tech in Biotechnology from Amity University in 2006.
- Tech in Biotechnology from Amity University in 2012.
PG Diploma in Intellectual Property In 2012
LLB from CCS in 2016
Registered Patent Agent in 2013
Academic Affiliation: Director, Trayambak, Dec 2012 to Date.
The registration fee for the webinar is Rs. 50/-
- Link to the registration form: https://forms.gle/hasuhrPCduMEBFvu5
- Google Pay on : +91 7666946381
The screen-shot of the payment receipt will have to be attached as proof of payment in the registration form, without the same registrations will not be accepted even if payment has been received.
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Certificates will be awarded to the attendees. (Soft copies)