OPINION

Patents Bill to Joint Select Committee

The Lok Sabha to-day [August 13, New Delhi] decided to refer to a Joint Select Committee the comprehensive Bill to amend and consolidate the law relating to patents. At the same time it passed another related Bill, the Indian Patents and Designs (Amendment) Bill, which seeks to replace an Ordinance issued last month providing for the postponement of consideration of the current applications before the Controller of Patents until the new comprehensive legislation is enacted. Mr. N. Dandekar’s resolution seeking disapproval of the ordinance as also as amendment by Mr. Shiva Chandra Jha for circulation of the Bill for eliciting public opinion were defeated by voice votes. Replying to the general debate, Mr. Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed, Minister for Industrial Development, said it was wrong to say that the Bill would come in the way of research. He said that at present over 90 per cent of the patents, mostly covering food products and medicines, were held by foreigners.