15 Apr 2020

India is making some major headway towards providing universal health coverage. However, a significant challenge is the limited number of qualified doctors and other healthcare professionals available in our country. Telemedicine is a solution to this limitation as it allows consultation, diagnosis, and treatment by healthcare professionals from remote locations with the help of technology. The requirement of telemedicine was starkly visible during the current COVID-19 pandemic and the resultant lockdown. It significantly helped in reducing hospital visits, waiting period and long travel to and from the hospital. Other benefits of telemedicine include timely and faster access to healthcare services, convenience, cost-saving and adequate documentation of health records. Until recently, there was no legislation or guidelines on how telemedicine could be practiced in India. In view of the current pandemic, the Government of India has timely come up with the Telemedicine Practice Guidelines on 25th March 2020.  This guideline forms a part of the Indian Medical Council (Professional Conduct, Etiquette and Ethics) Regulations, 2002, and is numbered Appendix-5. With this, there is now some legitimacy attached to the service and the guidelines would pave the way for a statutory legislation on the same lines in future.>>

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18 Feb 2020

India moved up one spot up in terms of trademark filings from its previous year’s ranking according to the World Intellectual Property Indicators published in October 2019[1]. The report also pointed out a large increase in trademark filing activity in India i.e. more than 20.9% with resident filing activity overwhelmingly contributing to the double-digit growth. Having remained below 100,000 until 2006, India’s trademark annual filings now exceed 320,000.>>

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06 Jan 2020

With land or property related litigation accounting for two-thirds of all civil cases pending in the Indian courts, evidence to establish legal title has taken a centre stage. Conflicting laws, administrative incompetence, and a lack of awareness among the population is clogging the judicial pipeline. Courts havetherefore been conferred with multiple opportunities to analysethe legal implicationsofthe various documents involved in property transaction and an unwavering opinion on thelack of standing of ‘Revenue Records’ in an ownership claim has emerged.>>

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10 Dec 2019

Land Acquisition in India – A Tough Balancing Act

Sovereigns across the globe have relied upon the doctrine of eminent domain to acquire land for public use. Consent of those who own the land takes a backseat when the greater good is at stake. Guided by this utilitarian principle and to usher a sense of equality among the economically weaker citizens of this nation, ‘right to property’ was removed as a fundamental right through the 44th amendment. However, democracy demands people-pleasing and power mongers have to give in once in a while for a euphoric sense of justice to prevail. Consequently, the doctrine of eminent domain was balanced through the introduction of the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition Rehabilitation and Resettlements Act, 2013 (RFCTLARR Act). The act empowered central and state governments to acquire lands for the development of public good with ‘consent’.>>

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26 Nov 2019

A clause for Alternate dispute resolution (ADR) is incorporated in a contract to ensure avoidance of lengthy and costly legal procedures. Undue delay in arbitration procedure tends to vitiate this essential objective that ADR seeks to achieve.  Further, the ADR process is designed to minimize the interference of courts, however, it is more of fiction as parties unhappy with the outcome of the process take the legal recourse as a dilatory tactic. Therefore, it is essential that arbitral awards are set aside only when there is a grave injustice or is unreasonable on the face of it[i].>>

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14 Oct 2019

Squatter’s Right i.e. Adverse Possession has often faced criticism for rewarding wrong-doers and assigning rights to usurpers. However, this age-old practice, based on the belief that “ownership” must belong to the person who made the best or highest use of the land, has stood the test of time. Since the concept has not been clearly defined in the statute, its development depends heavily on the equity and justice meted out by the courts under Article 27, 64 and 65 of the Limitations Act, 1963. In that direction, the Supreme Court has further solidified the position of the individuals nurturing the spirit of the land i.e. the possessors. The Court has now afforded them a sword i.e. the right to sue for protection of the property acquired through adverse possession.>>

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10 Sep 2019

The Government of India, Ministry of Commerce and Industry (Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade) vide its notification dated September 17, 2019, has published the Patents (Amendment) Rules, 2019[i] (hereinafter the “Rules”) amending the Patents Rules, 2003 (hereinafter the “Principal Rules”). The amendment came into force from the date of notification.>>

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23 Aug 2019

Increased IP awareness and the consequent surge in the rate of patent filings have failed to deliver on the effectiveness quotient of IP enforcement in the market. This has necessitated thorough scrutiny by the Indian Patent Office (IPO) to deter applicants from getting grant on inventions that might not be able to stand a trail in the Court of Law if its discussed. Therefore, drafting a patent application (specification) plays a crucial role in the success of an invention. From acceptance to infringement actions, the content and quality of the draft determine the fate of the invention. An inventor may know his invention well but might not be able to explain it in a manner compliant to the requirement of the patent office. In such scenario, professional assistance from an experienced patent practitioner is sought and it is expected of them to understand the technical complexity of the invention at hand and have the desired foreseeability to help the invention survive the various tests >>

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16 Aug 2019

The Hon’ble Supreme Court, in a recent judgement, answered the question of whether “special allowances” would fall within the expression “basic wages” for Provident Fund (PF) contribution in the affirmative. Interpreting the provisions of Employees Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952 (“PF Act”) as a beneficial social welfare legislation, the Court affirmed the PF authorities’ factual conclusion that the allowances in question were essentially a part of the basic wage camouflaged as part of an allowance so as to avoid deduction and contribution to the provident fund account of the employees. In essence, the Court reiterated the principle laid down in prior rulings that where the wage is universally, necessarily and ordinarily paid to all across the board, such emoluments are basic wages and employers had to expressly prove the special treatment in the special allowance for it to be kept out of the purview of calculations for PF purposes.>>

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