Compulsory licences in offing for generic drug makers

By Kamakhya Srivastava, Lex Orbis IP Practice
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The Controller General of Patents is soon going to make public the details of every drug patented in the country. As reported, these details will be extracted from information on the working of the patent that is filed by patent holders and from June it will be put on the website of the Patent office.

Making such information public is thought to be useful to check if patent holders are using the rights granted to them under the Patent Act to meet the country’s demands for medicines. If this is not being met, then a “compulsory licence” permits the manufacture of the patented drug.

It was reported that the Indian Patent Office believes that while around 34,000 patents were in force in India as of March 2010, only about 12 to 13% of were being used.

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Kamakhya Srivastava heads the Group on Research, Publication & Programmes [GRPP] of Lex Orbis, an intellectual property practice firm at New Delhi.

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