The Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB) has recently introduced various initiatives and guidelines towards digitization of its records to facilitate easy access of information.

In this regard, the IPAB Registry has started carrying out scanning work of all disposed, pending and fresh Applications, Miscellaneous Applications, Appeals, Rectifications Applications as OA's and ORA's and the same is stated to be in progress.

Further, IPAB has launched its new website with many useful features inter alia to check the status of pending cases based on case number, parties name or advocate name, to extract copy of orders, latest information, cause list, etc. It has also started the service for online registration of advocates/counsels by assigning them specific code numbers so as to enable them to carry out e-inspection of documents and obtain e-certified copies, which may further extend to other online services including e-filing of applications.

IPAB has issued a notification stating that going forward in addition to existing paper filing of Applications, Miscellaneous Applications, Appeals, Rectification Applications, a soft copy on CD-R/DVD-R containing exact contents of such paper filing must be filed. A procedure for document preparation for filing of soft copy has been specifically outlined.

IPAB, vide its notification dated August 29, 2016, has also come up with a proposal to start its dedicated mobile application with a view to disseminate information speedily and more user friendly through smart phones which would include features, among others, details of IPAB and its functions, the SR number and details, the Application/ Appeal number, notices, hearing notice, cause list, orders/ order sheet, case status, generation of certified copy status, online inspection of digitized records and orders etc.

The above discussed IPAB digitization drives and proposals are commendable and path-breaking with a view to keep pace with Digital India campaign launched by the Government of India.