Nuziveedu restrained from selling BT Cotton

In a judgement by the Delhi High Court dated 19th February, 2016, Justice Vipin Sanghi has restrained Nuziveedu from selling BT cotton manufactured after 15th  November,2015. A suit seeking an injunction  was filed by Monsanto in February this year against the sale of BT Cotton seeds and use of Monsanto’s trade mark by Nuziveedu seeds.

Nuziveedu is a former licencee of Monsanto and the licence agreement between the two parties came to an end on 15th November 2015. The Court, in its judgement, has also appointed a Local Commissioner to make an inventory of stocks available with Nuziveedu.

The matter has now been listed for 30th March, 2016.

Reliance Life Sciences restrained from launching their Biosimilar version of Herceptin

Roche has been successful in obtaining a temporary injunction from the Delhi High Court to block the expected launch of a biosimilar of breast cancer drug Herceptin (trastuzumab) by Reliance Life Sciences.

The order dated 2nd November 2015 of Justice Manmohan Singh of Delhi High Court restrains Reliance from launching the drug in the market till the next date of hearing.

Reliance Life Sciences has recently obtained approval for its biosimilar version of Herceptin named TrastuRel. According to Roche, Reliance Life Sciences has incorrectly been granted an approval by the Drug Controller General Office for TrastuRel. Roche argued that Reliance was supposed to conduct the clinical trials of all phases (I, II and III) to obtain an approval, however the approval has been granted without the clinical trials of Phase I and Phase II.

 The Counsel’s for Roche argued that the result of clinical trial of Phase III is dependent upon the results of trials of Phase I and Phase II. Thus, on the basis of clinical trial of Phase III even if valid the product of Reliance Life Sciences cannot be treated as “biosimilar product of Roche”.

 Justice Manmohan Singh held that serious issues are raised in the matter which would be decided after considering the explanation and reply of the defendants and till the next hearing Reliance has been restrained from launching the product. 

iBall restricted from importing handsets to India;Ericsson directed to negotiate FRAND license with iBall

The Delhi High Court restricts imports by iBall including mobile handsets and tablets in Ericsson vs. iBall interim order. This is similar to the case filed by Ericsson against Micromax, in which the court had ordered the Indian handset maker to pay royalty as an interim measure.

In the present case, it has been established in the court of law that iBall has failed to agree to sign a license agreement on standard-essential patents, required for making mobile phones and other devices. It was also established that iBall has not entered into a licensing agreement under the Fair, Reasonable, and Non-Discriminatory (FRAND) terms (covering patents on wireless technology standards such as GSM, EDGE and third generation).

Hence, on the day of the hearing on August 21, 2015, the lawyers for iBall sought time to take instructions from their client to decide if it was willing to sit with the  representatives of Ericsson and discuss the matter. However, no communication was received from iBall till September 2, 2015. iBall , in its defence also cited the recent Huawei vs ZTE decision to argue that Ericsson had not provided enough information and thus the suit could not proceed.Ericsson alleged that iBall had admitted the essentiality of Ericsson’s patents numerous times in its complaint to the CCI.

The Court, however pronounced that the suit filed by Ericsson is not premature and is maintainable. It further held that if the interim direction/order is not granted, Ericsson will suffer irreparable loss and injury for the reason that iBall will keep marketing mobile devices without the FRAND agreement and without paying royalty.It also restrained iBall from importing mobile handsets and other devices (including tablets) that infringe Swedish telecom equipment manufacturer Ericsson’s registered patents.The interim order was to become operative beginning 9th September.

However, an appeal was then filed by iBall against the interim order.The Appeal Court has directed the parties to try and reach a settlement in about 2 weeks.Ericsson has been directed to negotiate a FRAND license with iBall only for its Indian patents at this stage.The operation of the interim injunction has now been postponed till the next date of hearing as well.The appeal was re-notified to September 21, 2015.