THE PATENTS ACT, 1970

THE PATENTS ACT, 1970

(39 of 1970)

[19th September, 1970]

An Act to amend and consolidate the law relating to patents. BE it enacted by Parliament in the Twenty-first Year of the Republic of India as follows:—

CHAPTER I PRELIMINARY

1. Short title, extent and commencement.—

(1) This Act may be called the Patents Act, 1970.

(2) It extends to the whole of India.

(3) It shall come into force on such date as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint: Provided that different dates may be appointed for different provisions of this Act, and any reference in any such provision to the commencement of this Act shall be construed as a reference to the coming into force of that provision.


2. Definitions and interpretation.— (1) In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,— (a) "Appellate Board" means the Appellate Board referred to in section 116; (ab) "assignee" includes an assignee of the assignee and the legal representative of a deceased assignee and references to the assignee of any person include references to the assignee of the legal representative or assignee of that person; (aba) "Budapest Treaty" means the Budapest Treaty on the International Recognition of the Deposit of Micro-organisms for the purposes of Patent Procedure done at Budapest on 28th day of April, 1977, as amended and modified from time to time; (ac) "capable of industrial application", in relation to an invention, means that the invention is capable of being made or used in an industry;

(b) "Controller" means the Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trade Marks referred to in section 73;

(c) "convention application" means an application for a patent made by virtue of section 135;

(d) "convention country" means a country or a country which is member of a group of countries or a union of countries or an Intergovernmental organization referred to as a convention country in section 133;

(e) "district court" has the meaning assigned to that expression by the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (5 of 1908);

(f) “exclusive licence” means a licence from a patentee which confers on the licensee, on the licensee and persons authorised by him, to the exclusion of all other persons (including the patentee), any right in respect of the patented invention, and exclusive licensee shall be construed accordingly.

(g) Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005

(h) "Government undertaking" means any industrial undertaking carried on—

(i) by a department of the Government, or

(ii) by a corporation established by a Central, Provincial or State Act, which is owned or controlled by the Government, or

(iii) by a Government company as defined in section 617 of the Companies Act, 1956 (1 of 1956), or

(iv) by an institution wholly or substantially financed by the Government;

(i) "High Court", in relation to a State or Union territory, means the High Court having territorial jurisdiction in that State or Union territory, as the case may be; (ia) "international application" means an application for patent made in accordance with the Patent Cooperation Treaty; (j)"invention" means a new product or process involving an inventive step and capable of industrial application;

(ja) "inventive step" means a feature of an invention that involves technical advance as compared to the existing knowledge or having economic significance or both and that makes the invention not obvious to a person skilled in the art;

or a person to whom an invention is first communicated from outside India.

(2) In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,

any reference— (a) to the Controller shall be construed as including a reference to any officer discharging the functions of the Controller in pursuance of section 73; (b) to the patent office shall be construed as including a reference to any branch office of the patent office.


CHAPTER II

INVENTIONS NOT PATENTABLE

What are not inventions.—

The following are not inventions within the meaning of this Act,—

(a) an invention which is frivolous or which claims anything obviously contrary to well established natural laws;

(b) an invention the primary or intended use or commercial exploitation of which could be contrary public order or morality or which causes serious prejudice to human, animal or plant life or health or to the environment; (c) the mere discovery of a scientific principle or the formulation of an abstract theory or discovery of any living thing or non-living substance occurring in nature; (d) the mere discovery of a new form of a known substance which does not result in the enhancement of the known efficacy of that substance or the mere discovery of any new property or new use for a known substance or of the mere use of a known process, machine or apparatus unless such known process results in a new product or employs at least one new reactant.

Explanation.—For the purposes of this clause, salts, esters, ethers, polymorphs, metabolites, pure form, particle size, isomers, mixtures of isomers, complexes, combinations and other derivatives of known substance shall be considered to be the same substance, unless they differ significantly in properties with regard to efficacy; (e) a substance obtained by a mere admixture resulting only in the aggregation of the properties of the components thereof or a process for producing such substance; (f) the mere arrangement or re-arrangement or duplication of known devices each functioning independently of one another in a known way; (g) Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2002 (h) a method of agriculture or horticulture; (i) any process for the medicinal, surgical, curative, prophylactic diagnostic, therapeutic or other treatment of human beings or any process for a similar treatment of animals to render them free of disease or to increase their economic value or that of their products. (j) plants and animals in whole or any part thereof other than micro organisms but including seeds, varieties and species and essentially biological processes for production or propagation of plants and animals; (k) a mathematical or business method or a computer programme per se or algorithms; (l) a literary, dramatic, musical or artistic work or any other aesthetic creation whatsoever including cinematographic works and television productions; (m) a mere scheme or rule or method of performing mental act or method of playing game; (n) a presentation of information; (o) topography of integrated circuits; (p) an invention which in effect, is traditional knowledge or which is an aggregation or duplication of known properties of traditionally known component or components.

4. Inventions relating to atomic energy not patentable.—No patent shall be granted in respect of an invention relating to atomic energy falling within sub section (1) of section 20 of the Atomic Energy Act, 1962 (33 of 1962). 5. Inventions where only methods or processes of manufacture patentable: [Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005]


CHAPTER III

APPLICATIONS FOR PATENTS

6. Persons entitled to apply for patents—

(1) Subject to the provisions contained in section 134, an application for a patent for an invention may be made by any of the following persons, that is to say,—

(a) by any person claiming to be the true and first inventor of the invention;

(b) by any person being the assignee of the person claiming to be the true and first inventor in respect of the right to make such an application;

(c) by the legal representative of any deceased person who immediately before his death was entitled to make such an application.

(2) An application under sub-section

(1) may be made by any of the persons referred to therein either alone or jointly with any other person.

7. Form of application.—

(1) Every application for a patent shall be for one invention only and shall be made in the prescribed form and filed in the patent office.

(1A) Every international application under the Patent Cooperation Treaty for a patent, as may be filed designating India shall be deemed to be an application under this Act, if a corresponding application has also been filed before the Controller in India.

(1B) The filing date of an application referred to in sub-section (1A) and its complete specification processed by the patent office as designated office or elected office shall be the international filing date accorded under the Patent Cooperation Treaty.

(2) Where the application is made by virtue of an assignment of the right to apply for a patent for the invention, there shall be furnished with the application, or within such period as may be prescribed after the filing of the application, proof of the right to make the application.

(3) Every application under this section shall state that the applicant is in possession of the invention and shall name the person claiming to be the true and first inventor; and where the person so claiming is not the applicant or one of the applicants, the application shall contain a declaration that the applicant believes the person so named to be the true and first inventor. (4) Every such application (not being a convention application or an application filed under the Patent Cooperation Treaty designating India) shall be accompanied by a provisional or a complete specification.

8. Information and undertaking regarding foreign applications.—

(1) Where an applicant for a patent under this Act is prosecuting either alone or jointly with any other person an application for a patent in any country outside India in respect of the same or substantially the same invention, or where to his knowledge such an application is being prosecuted by some person through whom he claims or by some person deriving title from him, he shall file along with his application or subsequently within the prescribed period as the Controller may allow— (a) a statement setting out detailed particulars of such application; and (b) an undertaking that, up to the date of grant of patent in India, he would keep the Controller informed in writing, from time to time, of detailed particulars as required under clause (a) in respect of every other application relating to the same or substantially the same invention, if any, filed in any country outside India subsequently to the filing of the statement referred to in the aforesaid clause, within the prescribed time. (2) At any time after an application for patent is filed in India and till the grant of a patent or refusal to grant of a patent made thereon, the Controller may also require the applicant to furnish details, as may be prescribed, relating to the processing of the application in a country outside India, and in that event the applicant shall furnish to the Controller information available to him within such period as may be prescribed.

9. Provisional and complete specifications.—

(1) Where an application for a patent (not being a convention application or an application filed under the Patent Cooperation Treaty designating India) is accompanied by a provisional specification, a complete specification shall be filed within twelve months from the date of filing of the application, and if the complete specification is not so filed, the application shall be deemed to be abandoned. (2) Where two or more applications in the name of the same applicant are accompanied by provisional specifications in respect of inventions which are cognate or of which one is a modification of another and the Controller is of opinion that the whole of such inventions are such as to constitute a single invention and may properly be included in one patent, he may allow one complete specification to be filed in respect of all such provisional specifications. Provided that the period of time specified under sub-section (1) shall be reckoned from the date of filing of the earliest provisional specification. (3) Where an application for a patent (not being a convention application or an application filed under the Patent Cooperation Treaty designating India) in. accompanied by a specification purporting to be a complete specification, the Controller may, if the applicant be requests at any time within twelve months from the date of filing of the application, direct that such specification shall be treated, for the purposes of this Act, as a provisional specification and proceed with the application accordingly. (4) Where a complete specification has been filed in pursuance of an application for a patent accompanied by a provisional specification or by a specification treated by virtue of a direction under sub-section (3) as a provisional specification, the Controller may, if the applicant so requests at any time before grant of patent, cancel the provisional specification and post-date the application to the date of filing of the complete specification. 10. Contents of specifications.—(1) Every specification, whether provisional of complete, shall describe the invention and shall begin with a title sufficiently indicating the subject-matter to which the invention relates. (2) Subject to any rules that may be made in this behalf under this Act, drawings may, and shall, if the Controller so requires, be supplied for the purposes of any specification, whether complete or provisional; and any drawings so supplied shall, unless the Controller otherwise directs be deemed to form part of the specification, and references in this Act to a specification shall be construed accordingly. (3) If, in any particular case, the Controller considers that an application should be further supplemented by a model or sample of anything illustrating the invention or alleged to constitute an invention, such model or sample as he may require shall be furnished before the application is found in order for grant of a patent, but such model or sample shall not be deemed to form part of the specification. (4) Every complete specification shall— (a) fully and particularly describe the invention and its operation or use and the method by which it is to be performed; (b) disclose the best method of performing the invention which is known to the applicant and for which he is entitled to claim protection; and (c) end with a claim or claims defining the scope of the invention for which protection is claimed; (d) be accompanied by an abstract to provide technical information on the invention: Provided that— (i) the Controller may amend the abstract for providing better information to third parties; and (ii) if the applicant mentions a biological material in the specification which may not be described in such a way as to satisfy clauses (a) and (b), and if such material is not available to the public, the application shall be completed by depositing the material to an international depository authority under the Budapest Treaty and by fulfilling the following conditions, namely:— (A) the deposit of the material shall be made not later than the date of filing the patent application in India and a reference thereof shall be made in the specification within the prescribed period; (B) all the available characteristics of the material required for it to be correctly identified or indicated are included in the specification including the name, address of the depository institution and the date and number of the deposit of the material at the institution; (C) access to the material is available in the depository institution only after the date of the application of patent in India or if a priority is claimed after the date of the priority; (D) disclose the source and geographical origin of the biological material in the specification, when used in an invention. (4A) In case of an international application designating' India, the title, description, drawings, abstract and claims filed with the application shall be taken as the complete specification for the purposes of this Act. (5) The claim or claims of a complete specification shall relate to a single invention, or to a group of inventions linked so as to form a single inventive concept, shall be clear and succinct and shall be fairly based on the matter disclosed in the specification. (6) A declaration as to the inventor ship of the invention shall, in such cases as may be prescribed, be furnished in the prescribed form with the complete specification or within such period as may be prescribed after the filing of that specification. (7) Subject to the foregoing provisions of this section, a complete specification filed after a provisional specification may include claims in respect of developments of, or additions to, the invention which was described in the provisional specification, being developments or additions in respect of which the applicant would be entitled under the provisions of section 6 to make a separate application for a patent. 11. Priority dates of claims of a complete specification.—(1) There shall be a priority date for each claim of a complete specification. (2) Where a complete specification is filed in pursuance of a single application accompanied by— (a) a provisional specification; or (b) a specification which is treated by virtue of a direction under subsection (3) of section 9 as a provisional specification, and the claim is fairly based on the matter disclosed in the specification referred to in clause (a) or clause (b), the priority date of that claim shall be the date of the filing of the relevant specification. (3) Where the complete specification is filed or proceeded with in pursuance of two or more applications accompanied by such specifications as are mentioned in sub-section (2) and the claim is fairly based on the matter disclosed— (a) in one of those specifications, the priority date of that claim shall be the date of the filing of the application accompanied by that specification; (b) partly in one and partly in another, the priority date of that claim shall be the date of the filing of the application accompanied by the specification of the later date. (3A) Where a complete specification based on a previously filed application in India has been filed within twelve months from the date of that application and the claim is fairly based on the matter disclosed in the previously filed application, the priority date of that claim shall be the date of the previously filed application in which the matter was first disclosed. (4) Where the complete specification has been filed in pursuance of a further application made by virtue of sub-section (1) of section 16 and the claim is fairly based on the matter disclosed in any of the earlier specifications, provisional or complete, as the case may be, the priority date of that claim shall be the date of the filing of that specification in which the matter was first disclosed. (5) Where, under the foregoing provisions of this section, any claim of a complete specification would, but for the provisions of this sub-section, have two or more priority dates, the priority date of that claim shall be the earlier or earliest of those dates. (6) In any case to which sub-sections (2), (3), (3A), (4) and (5) do not apply, the priority date of a claim shall, subject to the provisions of section 137, be the date of filing of the complete specification. (7)The reference to the date of the filing of the application or of the complete s pecification in this section shall, in cases where there has been a post-dating under section 9 or section 17 or, as the case may be, an ante-dating under section 16, be a reference to the date as so post-dated or ante-dated. (8)A claim in a complete specification of a patent shall not be invalid by reason only of— (a) the publication or use of the invention so far as claimed in that claim on or after the priority date of such claim; or (b) the grant of another patent which claims the invention, so far as claimed in the first mentioned claim, in a claim of the same or a later priority date.

CHAPTER IV

PUBLICATION AND EXAMINATION OF APPLICATIONS

11A. Publication of applications.—

(1) Save as otherwise provided, no application for patent shall ordinarily be open to the public for such period as may be prescribed.

(2) The applicant may, in the prescribed manner, request the Controller to publish his application at any time before the expiry of the period prescribed under subsection (1) and subject to the provisions of sub-section (3), the Controller shall publish such application as soon as possible.

(3) Every application for a patent shall, on the expiry of the period specified under sub-section (1), be published, except in cases where the application—

(a) in which secrecy direction is imposed under section 35; or

(b) has been abandoned under sub-section (1) of section 9; or

(c) has been withdrawn three months prior to the period s pecified under sub-section (1).

(4) In case a secrecy direction has been given in respect of an application under section 35, then it shall be published after the expiry of the period prescribed under sub-section (1) or when the secrecy direction has ceased to operate, whichever is later.

(5) The publication, of every application under this section shall include the particulars of the date of application, number of application, name and address of the applicant identifying the application and an abstract.

(6) Upon publication of an application for a patent under this section—

(a) the depository institution shall make the biological material mentioned in the specification available to the public;

(b) the patent office may, on payment of such fee as may be prescribed, make the specification and drawings, if any, of such application available to the public.

(7) On and from the date of publication of the application for patent and until the date of grant of a patent in respect of such application, the applicant shall have the like privileges and rights as if a patent for the invention had been granted on the date of publication of the application: Provided that the applicant shall not be entitled to institute any proceedings for infringement until the patent has been granted: Provided further that the rights of a patentee in respect of applications made under sub-section (2) of section 5 before the 1st day of January, 2005 shall accrue from the date of grant of the patent: Provided also that after a patent is granted in respect of applications made under sub-section (2) of section 5, the patent-holder shall only be entitled to receive reasonable royalty from such enterprises which have made significant investment and were producing and marketing the concerned product prior to the 1st day of January, 2005 and which continue to manufacture the product covered by the patent on the date of grant of the patent and no infringement proceedings shall be instituted against such enterprises.

11B. Request for examination.—

(1) No application for a patent shall be examined unless the applicant or any other interested person makes a request in the prescribed manner for such examination within the prescribed period.

(2) Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005

(3) In case of an application in respect of a claim for a patent filed under sub-section (2) of section 5 before the 1st day of January, 2005 a request for its examination shall be made in the prescribed manner and within the prescribed period by the applicant or any other interested person.

(4) In case the applicant or any other interested person does not make a request for examination of the application for a patent within the period as specified under subsection (1) or sub-section (3), the application shall be treated as withdrawn by the applicant: Provided that— (i) the applicant may, at any time after filing the application but before the grant of a patent, withdraw the application by making a request in the prescribed manner; and (ii) in a case where secrecy direction has been issued under section 35, the request for examination may be made within the prescribed period from the date of revocation of the secrecy direction.

12. Examination of application.—

(1) When a request for examination has been made in respect of an application for a patent in the prescribed manner under sub-section (1) or sub section (3) of section 11B, the application and specification and other documents related thereto shall be referred at the earliest by the Controller to an examiner for making a report to him in respect of the following matters, namely:—

(a) whether the application and the specification and other documents relating thereto are in accordance with the requirements of this Act and of any rules made thereunder;

(b) whether there is any lawful ground of objection to the grant of the patent under this Act in pursuance of the application;

(c) the result of investigations made under section 13; and

(d) any other matter which may be prescribed.

(2) The examiner to whom the application and the specification and other documents relating thereto are referred under sub-section

(1) shall ordinarily make the report to the Controller within such period as may be prescribed.

13. Search for anticipation by previous publication and by prior claim.—

(1) The examiner to whom an application for a patent is referred under section 12 shall make investigation for the purpose of ascertaining whether the invention so far as claimed in any claim of the complete specification—

(a) has been anticipated by publication before the date of filing of the applicant's complete specification in any specification filed in pursuance of an application for a patent made in India and dated on or after the 1st day of January, 1912;

(b) is claimed in any claim of any other complete specification published on or after the date of filing of the applicant's complete specification, being a specification filed in pursuance of an application for a patent made in India and dated before or claiming the priority date earlier than that date.

(2) The examiner shall, in addition, make such investigation for the purpose of ascertaining whether the invention, so far as claimed in any claim of the complete specification, has been anticipated by publication in India or elsewhere in any document other than those mentioned in sub-section

(1) before the date of filing of the applicant's complete specification.

(3) Where a complete specification is amended under the provisions of this Act before the grant of patent, the amended specification shall be examined and investigated in like manner as the original specification.

(4) The examination and investigations required under section 12 and this section shall not be deemed in any way to warrant the validity of any patent, and no liability shall be incurred by the Central Government or any officer thereof by reason of, or in connection with, any such examination or investigation or any report or other proceedings consequent thereon.

14. Consideration of the report of examiner by Controller.—

Where, in respect of an application for a patent, the report of the examiner received by the Controller is adverse to the applicant or requires any amendment of the application, the specification or other documents to ensure compliance with the provisions of this Act or of the rules made thereunder, the Controller, before proceeding to dispose of the application in accordance with the provisions hereinafter appearing, shall communicate as expeditiously as possible the gist of the objections to the applicant and shall, if so required by the applicant within the prescribed period, give him an opportunity of being heard.

15. Power of Controller to refuse or require amended applications, etc., in certain case.—

Where the Controller is satisfied that the application or any specification or any other document filed in pursuance thereof does not comply with the requirements of this Act or of any rules made thereunder, the Controller may refuse the application or may require the application, specification or the other documents, as the case may be, to be amended to his satisfaction before he proceeds with the application and refuse the appl ication on failure to do so.

16. Power of Controller to make orders respecting division of application.—

(1) A person who has made an application for a patent under this Act may, at any time before the grant of the patent, if he so desires, or with a view to remedy the objection raised by the Controller on the ground that the claims of the complete specification relate to more than one invention, file a further application in respect of an invention disclosed in the provisional or complete specification already filed in respect of the first mentioned application.

(2) The further application under sub-section (1) shall be accompanied by a complete specification, but such complete specification shall not include any matter not in substance disclosed in the complete specification filed in pursuance of the first mentioned application.

(3) The Controller may require such amendment of the complete specification filed in pursuance of either the original or the further application as may be necessary to ensure that neither of the said complete specifications includes a claim for any matter claimed in the other. Explanation.—For the purposes of this Act, the further application and the complete specification accompanying it shall be deemed to have been filed on the date on which the first mentioned application had been filed, and the further application shall be proceeded with as a substantive application and be examined when the request for examination is filed within the prescribed period.

17. Power of Controller to make orders respecting dating of application.—

(1) Subject to the provisions of section 9, at any time after the filing of an application and before the grant of the patent under this Act, the Controller may, at the request of the -applicant made in the prescribed manner, direct that the application shall be post-dated to such date as may be specified in the request, and proceed with the application accordingly: Provided that no application shall be post-dated under this sub-section to a date later than six months from the date on which it was actually made or would, but for the provisions of this sub-section, be deemed to have been made.

(2) Where an application or specification (including drawings) or am other document is required to be amended under section 15, the application or specification or other document shall, if the Controller so directs, be deemed to have been made on the date on which the requirement is complied with or where the application or specification or other document is returned to the applicant on the date on which it is re-filed after complying with the requirement.

18. Powers of Controller in cases of anticipation.—

(1) Where it appears to the Controller that the invention so far as claimed in any claim of the complete specification has been anticipated in the manner referred to in clause (a) of sub section (1) or sub-section (2) of section 13, he may refuse the application unless the applicant—

(a) shows to the satisfaction of the Controller that the priority date of the claim of his complete specification is not later than the date on which the relevant document was published;

or (b) amends his complete specification to the satisfaction of the Controller.

(2) If it appears to the Controller that the invention is claimed in a claim of any other complete specification referred to in clause (b) of sub-section (1) of section 13, he may, subject to the provisions hereinafter contained, direct that a reference to that other specification shall be inserted by way of notice to the public in the applicant's complete specification unless within such time as may be prescribed,—

(a) the applicant shows to the satisfaction of the Controller that the priority date of his claim is not later than the priority date of the claim of the said other specification;

or (b) the complete specification is amended to the satisfaction of the Controller.

(3) If it appears to the Controller, as a result of an investigation under section 13 or otherwise,—

(a) that the invention so far as claimed in any claim of the applicant's complete specification has been claimed in any other complete specification referred to in clause (a) of sub-section (1) of section 13;

and (b) that such other complete specification was published on or after the priority date of the applicant's claim, then, unless it is shown to the satisfaction of the Controller that the priority date of the applicant's claim is not later than the priority date of the claim of that specification, the provisions of sub-section (2) shall apply thereto in the same manner as they apply to a specification published on or after the date of filing of the applicant's complete specification.

(4)Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005

19. Powers of Controller in case of potential infringement.—

(1) If, in consequence of the investigations required under this Act, it appears to the Controller that an invention in respect of which an application for a patent has been made cannot be performed without substantial risk of infringement of a claim of any other patent, he may direct that a reference to that other patent shall be inserted in the applicant's complete specification by way of notice to the public, unless within such time as may be prescribed— (a) the applicant shows to the satisfaction of the Controller that there are reasonable grounds for contesting the validity of the said claim of the other patent; or (b) the complete specification is amended to the satisfaction of the Controller. (2) Where, after a reference to another patent has been inserted in a complete specification in pursuance of a direction under sub-section (1)— (a) that other patent is revoked or otherwise ceases to be in force; or (b) the specification of that other patent is amended by the deletion of the relevant claim; or (c) it is found, in proceedings before the court or the Controller, that the relevant claim of that other patent is invalid or is not infringed by any working of the applicant's invention, the Controller may, on the application of the applicant, delete the reference to that other patent.

20. Powers of Controller to make orders regarding substitution of applicants, etc.—

(1) If the Controller is satisfied, on a claim made in the prescribed manner at any time before a patent has been granted, that by virtue of any assignment or agreement in writing made by the applicant or one of the applicants for the patent or by operation of law, the claimant would, if the patent were then granted, be entitled thereto or to the interest of the applicant therein, or to an undivided share of the patent or of that interest, the Controller may, subject to the provisions of this section, direct that the application shall proceed in the name of the claimant or in the names of the claimants and the applicant or the other joint applicant or applicants, accordingly as the case may require. (2) No such direction as aforesaid shall be given by virtue of any assignment or agreement made by one of two or more joint applicants for a patent except with the cons ent of the other joint applicant or applicants. (3) No such direction as aforesaid shall be given by virtue of any assignment or agreement for the assignment of the benefit of an invention unless —

(a) the invention is identified therein by reference to the number of the application for the patent;

or (b) there is produced to the Controller an acknowledgement by the person by whom the assignment or agreement was made that the assignment or agreement relates to the invention in respect of which that application is made;

or (c) the rights of the claimant in respect of the invention have been finally established by the decision of a court;

or (d) the Controller gives directions for enabling the application to proceed or for regulating the manner in which it should be proceeded with under sub-section (5).

(4) Where one of two or more joint applicants for a patent dies at any time before the patent has been granted, the Controller may, upon a request in that behalf made by the survivor or survivors, and with the consent of the legal representative of the deceased, direct that the application shall proceed in the name of the survivor or survivors alone.

(5) If any dispute arises between joint applicants for a patent whether or in what manner the application should be proceeded with, the Controller may, upon application made to him in the prescribed manner by any of the parties, and after giving to all parties concerned an opportunity to be heard, give such directions as he thinks fit for enabling the application to proceed in the name of one or more of the parties alone or for regulating the manner in which it should be proceeded with, or for both those purposes, as the case may require.

21. Time for putting application in order for grant.—

(1) An application for a patent shall be deemed to have been abandoned unless, Within such period as may be prescribed, the applicant has complied with all the requirements imposed on him by or under this Act, whether in connection with the complete specification or otherwise in relation to the application from the date on which the first statement of objections to the application or complete specification or other documents related thereto is forwarded to the applicant by the Controller.

Explanation.—Where the application for a patent or any specification or, in the case of a convention application or an application filed under the Patent Cooperation Treaty designating India any document filed as part of the application has been returned to the applicant by the Controller in the course of the proceedings, the applicant shall not be deemed to have complied with such requirements unless and until he has re-filed it or the applicant proves to the satisfaction of the Controller that for the reasons beyond his control such document could not be re-filed.

(2) If at the expiration of the period as prescribed under sub section (1),—

(a) an appeal to the High Court is pending in respect of the application for the patent for the main invention;

or (b) in the case of an application for a patent of addition, an appeal to the High Court is pending in respect of either that application or the application for the main invention, the time within which the requirements of the Controller shall be complied with shall, on an application made by the applicant before the expiration of the period as prescribed under sub-section (1), be extended until such date as the High Court may determine.

(3) If the time within which the appeal mentioned in sub-section (2) may be instituted has not expired, the Controller may extend the period as prescribed under subsection (1), to such further period as he may determine: Provided that if an appeal has been filed during the said further period, and the High Court has granted any extension of time for complying with the requirements of the Controller, then the requirements may be complied with within the time granted by the Court.

22. Acceptance of complete specification.-[Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005]

23. Advertisement of acceptance of complete specification.-[Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005]

24. Effect of acceptance of complete specification.-[Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005]

CHAPTER IV

A (Omitted) EXCLUSIVE MARKETING RIGHTS

24A. Application for grant of exclusive rights.-[Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005]

24B. Grant of exclusive rights.-[Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005] 24C. Compulsory licences.-[Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005] 24D. Special provision for selling or distribution.-[Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005] 24E. Suits relating to infringements.-[Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005] 24F. Central Government and its officers not to be liable.[Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005]

CHAPTER V

OPPOSITION PROCEEDINGS TO GRANT OF PATENTS

25. Opposition to the patent.—

(1) Where an application for a patent has been published but a patent has not been granted, any person may, in writing, represent by way of opposition to the Controller against the grant of patent on the ground—

(a) that the applicant for the patent or the person under or through whom he claims, wrongfully obtained the invention or any part thereof from him or from a person under or through whom he claims;

(b) that the invention so far as claimed in any claim of the complete specification has been published before the priority date of the claim—

(i) in any specification filed in pursuance of an application for a patent made in India on or after the 1st day of January, 1912;

or (ii) in India or elsewhere, in any other document: Provided that the ground specified in sub-clause (ii) shall not be available where such publication does not constitute an anticipation of the invention by virtue of sub-section (2) or subsection (3) of section 29;

(c) that the invention so far as claimed in any claim of the complete specification is claimed in a claim of a complete specification published on or after priority date of the applicant's claim and filed in pursuance of an application for a patent in India, being a claim of which the priority date is earlier than that of the applicant's claim;

(d) that the invention so far as claimed in any claim of the complete specification was publicly known or publicly used in India before the priority date of that claim.

Explanation.—For the purposes of this clause, an invention relating to a process for which a patent is claimed shall be deemed to have been publicly known or publicly used in India before the priority date of the claim if a product made by that process had already been imported into India before that date except where such importation has been for the purpose of reasonable trial or experiment only;

(e) that the invention so far as claimed in any claim of the complete specification is obvious and clearly does not involve any inventive step, having regard to the matter published as mentioned in clause (b) or having regard to what was used in India before the priority date of the applicant's claim;

(f) that the subject of any claim of the complete specification is not an invention within the meaning of this Act, or is not patentable under this Act;

(g) that the complete specification does not sufficiently and clearly describe the invention or the method by which it is to be performed;

(h) that the applicant has failed to disclose to the Controller the information required by section 8 or has furnished the information which in any material particular was false to his knowledge;

(i) that in the case of a convention application, the application was not made within twelve months from the date of the first application for protection for the invention made in a convention country by the applicant or a person from whom he derives title;

(j) that the complete specification does not disclose or wrongly mentions the source or geographical origin of biological material used for the invention;

(k) that the invention so far as claimed in any claim of the complete specification is anticipated having regard to the knowledge, oral or otherwise, available within any local or indigenous community in India or elsewhere, but on no other ground, and the Controller shall, if requested by such person for being heard, hear him and dispose of such representation in such manner and within such period as may be prescribed.

(2) At any time after the grant of patent but before the expiry of a period of one year from the date of publication of grant of a patent, any person interested may give notice of opposition to the Controller in the prescribed manner on any of the following grounds, namely:—

(a) that the patentee or the person under or through whom he claims, wrongfully obtained the invention or any part thereof from him or from a person under or through whom he claims;

(b) that the invention so far as claimed in any claim of the complete specification has been published before the priority date of the claim—

(i) in any specification filed in pursuance of an application for a patent made in India on or after the 1st day of January, 1912;

or (ii) in India or elsewhere, in any other document: Provided that the ground specified in sub-clause (ii) shall not be available where such publication does not constitute an anticipation of the invention by virtue of sub-section (2) or sub-section (3) of section 29;

(c) that the invention so far as claimed in any claim of the complete specification is claimed in a claim of a complete specification published on or after the priority date of the claim of the patentee and filed in pursuance of an application for a patent in India, being a claim of which the priority date is earlier than that of the claim of the patentee;

(d) that the invention so far as claimed in any claim of the complete specification was publicly known or publicly used in India before the priority date of that claim.

Explanation.—For the purposes of this clause, an invention relating to a process for which a patent is granted shall be deemed to have been publicly known or publicly used in India before the priority date of the claim if a product made by that process had already been imported into India before that date except where such importation has been for the purpose of reasonable trial or experiment only;

(e) that the invention so far as claimed in any claim of the complete specification is obvious and clearly does not involve any inventive step, having regard to the matter published as mentioned in clause (b) or having regard to what was used in India before the priority date of the claim;

(f) that the subject of any claim of the complete specification is not an invention within the meaning of this Act, or is not patentable under this Act;

(g) that the complete specification does not sufficiently and clearly describe the invention or the method by which it is to be performed;

(h) that the patentee has failed to disclose to the Controller the information required by section 8 or has furnished the information which in any material particular was false to his knowledge;

(i) that in the case of a patent granted on a convention application, the application for patent was not made within twelve months from the date of the first application for protection for the invention made in a convention country or in India by the patentee or a person from whom he derives title;

(j) that the complete specification does not disclose or wrongly mentions the source and geographical origin of biological material used for the invention;

(k) that the invention so far as claimed in any claim of the complete specification was anticipated having regard to the knowledge, oral or otherwise, available within any local or indigenous community in India or elsewhere,

but on no other ground.

(3) (a) Where any such notice of opposition is duly given under sub-section (2), the Controller shall notify the patentee.

(b) On receipt of such notice of opposition, the Controller shall, by order in writing, constitute a Board to be known as the Opposition Board consisting of such officers as he may determine and refer such notice of opposition along with the documents to that Board for examination and submission of its recommendations to the Controller. (c) Every Opposition Board constituted under clause (b) shall conduct the examination in accordance with such procedure as may be prescribed. (4) On receipt of the recommendation of the Opposition Board and after giving the patentee and the opponent an opportunity of being heard, the Controller shall order either to maintain or to amend or to revoke the patent. (5) While passing an order under sub-section (4) in respect of the ground mentioned in clause (d) or clause (e) of sub-section (2), the Controller shall not take into account any personal document or secret trial or secret use. (6) In case the Controller issues an order under sub-section (4) that the patent shall be maintained subject to amendment of the specification or any other document, the patent shall stand amended accordingly. 26. In cases of "obtaining" Controller may treat the patent as the patent of opponent.—(1) Where in any opposition proceeding under this Act the Controller finds that— (a) the invention, so far as claimed in any claim of the complete specification, was obtained from the opponent in the manner set out in clause (a) of sub-section (2) of section 25 and revokes the patent on that ground, he may, on request by such opponent made in the prescribed manner, direct that the patent shall stand amended in the name of the opponent; (b) a part of an invention described in the complete specification was so obtained from the opponent, he may pass an order requiring that the specification be amended by the exclusion of that part of the invention. (2) Where an opponent has, before the date of the order of the Controller requiring the amendment of a complete specification referred to in clause (b) of sub-section (1), filed an application for a patent for an invention which includes the whole or a part of the invention held to have been obtained from him and such application is pending, the Controller may treat such application and specification in so far as they relate to the invention held to have been obtained from him, as having been filed, for the purposes of this Act relating to the priority dates of claims of the complete specification, on the date on which the corresponding document was or was deemed to have been filed by the patentee in the earlier application but for all other purposes the application of the opponent shall be proceeded with as an application for a patent under this Act.

1.Refusal to patent without opposition.—[Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005,]

2.Mention of inventor as such in patent.—(1) If the Controller is satisfied, upon a request or claim made in accordance with the provisions of this section,—

(a) that the person in respect of or by whom the request or claim is made is the inventor of an invention in respect of which application for a patent has been made, or of a substantial part of that invention; and

(b) that the application for the patent is a direct consequence of his being the inventor, the Controller shall, subject to the provisions of this section, cause him to be mentioned as inventor in any patent granted in pursuance of the application in the complete specification and in the register of patents:

Provided that the mention of any person as inventor under this section shall not confer or derogate from any rights under the patent.

(2) A request that any person shall be mentioned as aforesaid may be made in the prescribed manner by the applicant for the patent or (where the person alleged to be the inventor is not the applicant or one of the applicants) by the applicant and that person.

(3) If any person other than a person in respect of whom a request in relation to the application in question has been made under sub-section (2) desires to be mentioned as aforesaid, he may make a claim in the prescribed manner in that behalf.

(4) A request or claim under the foregoing provisions of this section shall be made before the grant of patent.

(5) [Omitted by the Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005]

(6) Where a claim is made under sub-section (3), the Controller shall give notice of the claim to every applicant for the patent (not being the claimant) and to any other person whom the Controller may consider to be interested; and before deciding upon any request or claim made under sub-section (2), or subsection (3), the Controller shall, if required, hear the person in respect of or by whom the request or claim is made, and, in the case of a claim under sub-section (3), any person to whom notice of the claim has been given as aforesaid.

(7) Where any person has been mentioned as inventor in pursuance of this section, any other person who alleges that he ought not to have been so mentioned may at any time apply to the Controller for a certificate to that effect, and the Controller may, after hearing, if required, any person whom he may consider to be interested, issue such a certificate, and if he does so, he shall rectify the specification and the register accordingly.

ANTICIPATION

29. Anticipation by previous publication.—

(1) An invention claimed in a complete specification shall not be deemed to have been anticipated by reason only that the invention was published in a specification filed in pursuance of an application for a patent made in India and dated before the 1st day of January, 1912.

(2) Subject as hereinafter provided, an invention claimed in a complete specification shall not be deemed to have been anticipated by reason only that the invention was published before the priority date of the relevant claim of the specification, if the patentee or the applicant for the patent proves —

(a) that the matter published was obtained from him, or (where he is not himself the true and first inventor) from any person from whom he derives title, and was published without his consent or the consent of any such person;

and (b) where the patentee or the applicant for the patent or any person from whom he derives title learned of the publication before the date of the application for the patent, or, in the case of a convention application, before the date of the application for protection in a convention country, that the application or the application in the convention country, as the case may be, was made as soon as reasonably practicable thereafter: Provided that this sub-section shall not apply if the invention was before the priority date of the claim commercially worked in India, otherwise than for the purpose of reasonable trial, either by the patentee or the applicant for the patent or any person from whom he derives title or by any other person with the consent of the patentee or the applicant for the patent or any person from whom he derives title.

(3) Where a complete specification is filed in pursuance of an application for a patent made by a person being the true and first inventor or deriving title from him, an invention claimed in that specification shall not be deemed to have been anticipated by reason only of any other application for a patent in respect of the same invention made in contravention of the rights of that person, or by reason only that after the date of filing of that other application the invention was used or published, without the consent of that person, by the applicant in respect of that other application, or by any other person in consequence of any disclosure of any invention by that applicant.

30. Anticipation by previous communication to Government.—

An invention claimed in a complete specification shall not be deemed to have been anticipated by reason only of the communication of the invention to the Government or to any person authorized by the Government to investigate the invention or its merits, or of anything done, in consequence of such a communication, for the purpose of the investigation.

31. Anticipation by public display, etc.—An invention claimed in a complete specification shall not be deemed to have been anticipated by reason only of—

(a) the display of the invention with the consent of the true and first inventor or a person deriving title from him at an industrial or other exhibition to which the provisions of this section have been extended by the Central Government by notification in the Official Gazette, or the use thereof with his consent for the purpose of such an exhibition in the place where it is held;

or (b) the publication of any description of the invention in consequence of the display or use of the invention at any such exhibition as aforesaid;

or (c) the use of the invention, after it has been displayed or used at any such exhibition as aforesaid and during the period of the exhibition, by any person without the consent of the true and first inventor or a person deriving title from him;

or (d) the description of the invention in a paper read by the true and first inventor before a learned society or published with his consent in the transactions of such a society, if the application for the patent is made by the true and first inventor or a person deriving title from him not later than twelve months after the opening of the exhibition or the reading or publication of the paper, as the case may be.

32. Anticipation by public working.—

An invention claimed in a complete specification shall not be deemed to have been anticipated by reason only that at any time within one year before the priority date of the relevant claim of the specification, the invention was publicly worked in India—

(a) by the patentee or applicant for the patent or any person from whom he derives title;

or (b) by any other person with the consent of the patentee or applicant for the patent or any person for whom he derives title, if the working was effected for the purpose of reasonable trial only and if it was reasonably necessary, having regard to the nature of the invention, that the working for that purpose should be effected in public.

33. Anticipation by use and publication after provisional Specification.—

(1) Where a complete specification is filed or proceeded with in pursuance of an application which was accompanied by a provisional specification or where a complete specification filed along with an application is treated by virtue of a direction under sub-section (3) of section 9 as a provisional specification, then, notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, the Controller shall not refuse to grant the patent, and the patent shall not be revoked or invalidated, by reason only that any matter described in the provisional specification or in the specification treated as aforesaid as a provisional specification was used in India or published in India or elsewhere at any time after the date of the filing of that specification.

(2) Where a complete specification is filed in pursuance of a convention application, then, notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, the Controller shall not refuse to grant the patent, and the patent shall not be revoked or invalidated, by reason only that any matter disclosed in any application for protection in a convention country upon which the convention application is rounded was used in India or published in India or elsewhere at any time after the date of that application for protection.

34. No anticipation if circumstances are only as described in sections 29, 30, 31 and 32.— Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, the Controller shall not refuse to grant a patent, and a patent shall not be revoked or invalidated by reason only of any circumstances which, by virtue of section 29 or section 30 or section 31 or section 32, do not constitute an anticipation of the invention claimed in the specification.

CHAPTER VII

PROVISIONS FOR SECRECY OF CERTAIN INVENTIONS

35. Secrecy directions relating to inventions relevant for defence purposes.—

(1) Where, in respect of an application made before or after the commencement of this Act for a patent, it appears to the Controller that the invention is one of a class notified to him by the Central Government as relevant for defence purposes, or, where otherwise the invention appears to him to be so relevant, he may give directions for prohibiting or restricting the publication of information with respect to the invention or the communication of such information.

(2) Where the Controller gives any such directions as are referred to in subsection (1), he shall give notice of the application and of the directions to the Central Government, and the Central Government shall, upon receipt of such notice, consider whether the publication of the invention would be prejudicial to the defence of India, and if upon such consideration, it appears to it that the publication of the invention would not so prejudice, give notice to the Controller to that effect, who shall thereupon revoke the directions and notify the applicant accordingly.

(3) Without prejudice to the provisions contained in sub-section (1), where the Central Government is of opinion that an invention in respect of which the Controller has not given any directions under sub-section (1), is relevant for defence purposes, it may at any time before grant of patent notify the Controller to that effect, and thereupon the provisions of that sub-section shall apply as if the invention where one of the class notified by the Central Government, and accordingly the Controller shall give notice to the Central Government of the directions issued by him. 36. Secrecy directions to be periodically reviewed.—(1) The question whether an invention in respect of which directions have been given under section 35 continues to be relevant for defence purposes shall be reconsidered by the Central Government at intervals of six months or on a request made by the applicant which is found to be reasonable by the C

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THE PATENTS ACT, 1970

THE PATENTS ACT, 1970

(39 of 1970)

[19th September, 1970]

An Act to amend and consolidate the law relating to patents. BE it enacted by Parliament in the Twenty-first Year of the Republic of India as follows:—

CHAPTER I PRELIMINARY

1. Short title, extent and commencement.—

(1) This Act may be called the Patents Act, 1970.

(2) It extends to the whole of India.

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