The patents amendment Act, 2005 and TRIPS Compliance: A critique
The Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005 introduces pharmaceutical product patents in India for the first time. This Act attempts to balance out competing interests of a variety of stakeholders, including domestic generic medicine producers, foreign multinational pharmaceutical companies and civil society groups concerned with medicines. December 2004 saw an unprecedented national debate on patents in India. Patents, as an institution of private property, were alien to most Indians. The national debate on compliance with the World Trade Organization (WTO) Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs) agreement thus marked a new beginning for India's premature patent system. One of the important positive outcomes of the recent public debate on patents and TRIPs compliance is the establishment of a national awareness of patents. The main object behind the introduction and passing of the Patents (Amendment) Act 2005 was to meet India’s deadline, 31 December 2004, to comply with the TRIPS Agreement. While highlighting the key of the 2005 amendments and the lack of clarity, this article analyse the implications of the amendments proposed in the act to ascertain if the Act makes the Indian patent law trips compliant.