In an order dated February 14, 2023, the Madras High Court has directed the State Government to notify the draft Madras High Court Intellectual Property Rights Division Rules to facilitate the inauguration of the Intellectual Property Division. Taking into account the issues faced by the litigants in getting an effective solution to IP disputes in light of the abolition of the Intellectual Property Appellate Board, the court has granted a week’s time to the State Government to issue the said notification.
The draft Madras High Court Intellectual Property Rights Division Rules were formulated by the Intellectual Property Committee set up by the Chief Justice of the Madras High Court. The draft rules envisage the setting up of an Intellectual Property Division to deal with matters pertaining to intellectual property. After the draft rules were approved by the Full Court, the Registry approached the State Government in October 2022, requesting to notify the same in the official gazette.
Despite frequent reminders, the rules have not been notified by the State Government. This inordinate delay has aggrieved several litigants and left them remediless especially since the Intellectual Property Appellate Board has been abolished under the Tribunal Reforms Act, 2021.
The petitioner, M/s. Galatea Limited filed writ petitions before the Madras High Court as its case was pending before the Intellectual Property Appellate Board, Chennai. Opining that it did not find “any justification” for not notifying the rules expeditiously, the court has given a week’s time to the State Government to issue the said notification.
The matter was listed on February 22, 2023; however, the case was adjourned, and the date of the next hearing has been postponed to March 1, 2023.