The Swiss multinational pharmaceutical company Novartis has obtained court orders restraining five city-based pharma companies from manufacturing its patented drug for diabetes. The international pharma giant has also moved a commercial court in Vadodara to ensure that four more companies do not go for production because its patent license for the drug is still valid. Novartis approached the courts 10 days ago after the state government informed it that there were 18 local pharma companies, which intended to manufacture Novartis’ patented drug named Vildagliptin. Novartis claimed before the court that its patent license for the medicine is valid up to December 9, 2019. But when it sought information from the Gujarat government about the companies that planned manufacturing of Vildagliptin under the Right to Information (RTI) Act, the state government informed it on May 4 that there were 18 such companies which were going to manufacture the drug before expiry of the patent.
Novartis also told the court that after getting information from the state government, it got the investigation conducted through an independent agency, Stratagic Analysis India Pvt Ltd, and obtained a report on July 14. The report said that these 18 companies were going to infringe its patent rights. Novartis has filed the trademark suit worth Rs two crore against five companies — Mann Pharmaceuticals Ltd, Taj Pharmaceuticals Ltd, Saga Laboratories, 5M Biotech India and Sushen Medicamentos Pvt Ltd.— in Ahmedabad’s commercial court on July 23. The pharma giant urged the court to stay these local companies from going into production by expressing fear that it would not only violate the patent rights, but also eat into its market which is a monopoly following the patent right. Novartis also cited various orders from Delhi HC, Bombay HC and Madras HC restricting local pharma companies from manufacturing Vildagliptin. After hearing Novartis, commercial court judge M C Tyagi stayed five companies in Ahmedabad “not to directly or indirectly deal in Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API), pharmaceutical products, or formulation containing Vildagliptin alone or Vildagliptin in combination with any other compound or API or in any other form” till August 29, when further hearing is posted. Novartis also approached a commercial court in Vadodara to stop four companies in Vadodara and Surat — Centurion Laboratories Pvt Ltd, Neelkanth Chemicals, Micron Pharmaceuticals and Exemed Pharmaceuticals. Hearing in this regard is posted on August 14.
Source : timesofindia.indiatimes.com
Published on: August 8, 2018