9 Aug 2023 11:42 AM GMT
Taking exception to a “blank order” passed by a Senior Examiner of Trade Marks, the Delhi High Court recently said that it is no longer surprised at the kind of orders passed by the Registry of Trade Marks or Controller General of Patents.“This Court never ceases to be surprised at the kind of the orders which come before it, from the office of the Registry of Trade Marks/Controller...
Taking exception to a “blank order” passed by a Senior Examiner of Trade Marks, the Delhi High Court recently said that it is no longer surprised at the kind of orders passed by the Registry of Trade Marks or Controller General of Patents.
“This Court never ceases to be surprised at the kind of the orders which come before it, from the office of the Registry of Trade Marks/Controller General of Patents. The present case is, in fact, sui generis,” Justice C Hari Shankar said in an order passed on August 03.
The court was hearing a plea moved by Ravi Manchanda, trading as Seema Engineering Works, challenging an order passed by the Senior Examiner of Trade Marks on July 12, 2018.
“The part of the above communication which is supposed to contain the “order” is, therefore, gloriously blank,” the court said after perusing the order.
Justice Shankar also took note of the fact that instead of bringing the attention of the Senior Examiner to the fact that he had passed no order at all on July 12, 2018, Manchanda wrote to him the next day seeking the grounds for the impugned decision.
The court also noted that Manchanda initially approached the Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB) on not being communicated the grounds of the decision. However, his appeal was transferred to the High Court on abolishing of the Board.
“The appeal has remained pending before learned IPAB for four years and before this Court for one year. The fate of the appeal is pre-ordained. However, inasmuch as there is no order at all, passed by the Senior Examiner of Trade Marks, I am really at a loss as to what to set aside,” Justice Shankar said.
Allowing the appeal, the court directed the Registrar in the office of the Trade Marks registry to ensure that Manchanda’s application is dealt with expeditiously and that a decision is taken within six months, in accordance with law.
In May, Justice Shankar had directed an Assistant Controller General Of Patents to undergo a course on passing judicial orders at the Delhi Judicial Academy as the court was “seriously disturbed” about an order passed by the officer while rejecting an application for grant of patent.
The court had said that the order was nothing less than a “total mockery” of the functions which are vested in the quasi-judicial authorities in the office of the Controller General of Patents.
Similarly, a coordinate bench of Justice Navin Chawla in April said that the officers of Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trade Mark must practice due application of mind while rendering decisions and that template or “cut-paste” orders must be discouraged and cannot sustain.
While pulling up an Assistant Controller of Patents and Designs for passing a “mechanical order” while refusing an application for grant of patent, the court had observed:
“Reasoning through a speaking order is a vital aspect of the principles of natural justice and is of utmost importance, which needs to be underscored. If the patent office’s orders lack proper reasoning, it may be difficult for the applicant to identify the grounds for appeal. The legal proposition that an order of such kind should be supported by reasons, needs no reiteration.”
Title: RAVI MANCHANDA TRADING AS SEEMA ENGINEERING WORKS v. THE REGISTRAR OF TRADE MARKS
Citation: 2023 LiveLaw (Del) 667
Click Here To Read Order