trademark - passing off - brand name
I have a company under the name of ‘Bislari’ which sells fruit juices in Haryana. This company is registered by Registrar and is operating its business for the past three years. After three years, a well known manufacturer of purified water has applied to the central government to direct to change the name of ‘Bislari’ with the contention that the name ‘Bislari’ is very much similar to their registered trademark. What will be the next legal steps for my company? We do not want to sell purified water.
A registered trade mark can be used only by the person or company registering the trademark. The use of such a trademark by another person is a clear infringement of the right of the person who has registered the trademark and such an act can be penalized under Section 28 of Trade Marks Act, 1999
Registered Properietor can state that the trademark has been infringed as the use of the mark by the Company satisfies the condition given in the Act. As per Section 29 of the Trade Marks Act, 1999 the use of a trademark which is identical or deceptively similar to a registered trademark will be considered as an infringement. Herein, both the companies are using a similar name and they are selling almost similar products and it can easily be deceptive for the public when they are buying any of the products. Further Section 134 of Trade Marks Act, 1999 directs that no suit related to the passing off will be instituted in any court inferior to that of the District Court. So, in this case the registered proprietor can file a suit against the company in a District Court having competent jurisdiction to try the suit and claim relief under Section 135 of Trade Marks Act, 1999 wherein the relief that can be either injunction or damages or both, as the Court will deem fit.
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