A commercial court in Pune on Saturday refused to pass an interim injunction to stop the Serum Institute of India from using the trademark “Covishield” for its vaccine against the coronavirus, reported Live Law.
On January 4, Nanded-based pharmaceutical products manufacturer Cutis Biotech in Maharashtra had filed a civil lawsuit asking the Serum Institute of India to stop using the trademark or any other similar names for its Covid-19 vaccine as the company started using it first.
In its reply, the Serum Institute had highlighted the difference in the products of the two firms and the timeline of the applications for the trademark.
“Judge AV Rote has rejected the application which had sought a perpetual injunction against Serum Institute of India for purposes of restraining it from using the trademark Covishield or any other mark which is confusingly similar with the trademark Covishield in respect of the goods which are same, similar, dissimilar with the goods of the plaintiff,” Hitesh Jain, a partner at Parinam law Associates, representing the Serum Institute, said in a statement, according to NDTV.
The court also noted that Cutis Biotech had not approached it with “clean hands and suppressed material facts”. “...plaintiff could not point out that, balance of convenience lies in its favour nor plaintiff could point out that, it is going to suffer irreparable loss,” the court said, reported Live Law.
Meanwhile, lawyer Aditya Soni, on behalf of Cutis Biotech, told The Times of India that the company “will take a call on exercising” further legal recourse once the court order is analysed.
The Drug Controller General of India had on January 3 approved the emergency use of Serum Institute’s “Covishield” vaccine. The Serum Institute is already bulk producing the vaccine jointly developed by Oxford University and AstraZeneca. Over 35 lakh people have so far been inoculated in India so far, in the vaccination process that began on January 16.
On Saturday, the Serum Institute of India announced the potential launch of another vaccine, Covovax, by June. The Serum Institute and the Indian Council of Medical Research have collaborated to manufacture Covovax, which is developed by United States vaccine company Novavax.