Chennai: The Madras High Court restrained the Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB) on 9 August from hearing an appeal filed by Swiss pharma major Novartis AG against the rejection of its patent application for a blood cancer drug.
The court granted the interim stay for four weeks in response to an appeal filed by Novartis to challenge the IPAB’s order dismissing its plea to exclude technical member S Chandrasekar from the bench hearing its appeal against the rejection of the patent application for beta crystalline form of imatinib mesylate.
A division bench of Chief Justice A P Shah and Justice P Jyothimani ordered that notices should be issued to the Union government and three others and adjourned the hearing of the case till 10 September.
The IPAB had rejected Novartis’ plea on 21 July to exclude the technical member from the bench. Novartis had objected the inclusion of Chandrasekaran in the IPAB bench on the ground that he had “disabled himself” to hear the firm’s appeal against the rejection of the patent application as he had deposed in a counter-affidavit filed in the Madras High Court.
He had disabled himself as he had taken a stand in the matter by filing the deposition, and as such he would not be free from bias, Novartis contended.
Rejecting the objection, the IPAB bench comprising Chairman M H S Ansari and S Chandrasekaran had said the submissions made by Chandrasekaran in court had no relevance as they were based on his official capacity as a statutory authority before assuming the post of adjudicator. Hence, the submissions must be eschewed from consideration in the instant matter, the IPAB bench said.