The Delhi High Court stated that simplicity does not defeat an invention – even simple inventions are patentable.
The appeal was filed by the Appellant-Avery Dennison Corporation – seeking inter alia, an order to set aside the decision of the Respondent-Controller General of Patents and Designs.
The order refused the application for grant of a patent titled ‘Notched Fastener’, under Section 15 of the Patents Act, 1970 on the ground that the claimed subject matter of the subject patent does not constitute an invention under Section 2(1)(j) of the Act.
Advocate Rohit Rangi, appearing for the Appellant, submitted that the cited prior arts are distinguishable, and the subject patent is worthy of patent protection as it involves an inventive step.
Harish Vaidyanathan, CGSC on behalf of the Respondent, submitted that There has not been any no substantial data provided by the appellant to substantiate their claim of economic advantage over prior art.
The single judge bench of Justice Prathiba M. Singh observed that the distinction between the prior art and the subject patent primarily resides in the shape, position, and engagement with the notch as also with the manner in which the detachment takes place when the fastening happens.
The court said that if the invention was so obvious, fasteners and fastener stock being products used in bulk in industries, any third party could have made the changes in the prior art to arrive at the subject invention – which obviously has not happened.
It was further observed that the improvement in the case between the prior art and the subject invention is clearly decipherable.
The court said that the closest prior art identified is D2 and the subject application discloses a technical advancement in comparison with the closest prior art and the features comprising inventive step are not obvious to a person skilled in the art and therefore, the subject patent application satisfies the test of inventive step.
It was held by the court that the Controller’s finding that any person skilled in the art could make the variation and modifications in D2 to arrive at the subject invention, is not tenable.
The court ordered that the patent shall, accordingly, proceed for grant.
Case title: Avery Dennison Corporation v/s Controller of Patents and Designs
Citation: C.A. (COMM.IPD-PAT) 29/2021