Delhi High Court provided some relief to homegrown fast moving consumer goods company Patanjali by passing an injunction order against companies who were wrongfully using their trademark “Patanjali”.
Facts and Proceedings of the case
Patanjali Ayurved Limited the homegrown fast moving consumer goods company is owned by Yoga guru Ramdev. Patanjali was founded in January 2006 and is currently the fastest growing fast moving consumer goods company in India. Its turnover in the financial year 2016-2017 was estimated to be over rupees ten thousand crores. Patanjali creates more than 900 products and claims that they only use natural and Ayurvedic herbs. Baba Ramdev in an interview revealed that entire profit of Patanajli goes to charity. It filed a suit for trademark infringement against four firms and a trust. They contended that four companies and a trust are wrongfully using their registered trademark. Patanjali Ayurved limited through their advocates Simranjeet Singh, Rohan Ahuja and Sonali Dhir of Athena Legal wanted a permanent injunction against the infringers and further claimed that infringers were passing off their product as that of the company and engaging in unfair competition. The plaintiff in its suit also alleged that defendants were claiming to do so under a valid authorization of the trust named Maharishi Patanjali Vedic Foundation.
The decision of the Court
The Four firms namely Karamveer Ayurveda, Dr. Zee Biotech, Dhatri, and Diwai Gramodyog Sewa Sansthan have been prevented from manufacturing, selling or advertising and marketing goods or services bearing the mark or word Patanjali.
Single judge Bench of Delhi High Court comprising of Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw passed the injunction order and noted that Patanjali Ayurved has made out a prima facie case for grant of an ex-parte order in its favour restraining the four firms and the trust from infringing its trademark. Court also issued a notice to all the five defendants asking them to file their reply to the plea by 16 May which is also the next date of hearing.
Learning of the case
From this case, we learn that intellectual properties of foreign brands are well protected under the existing Intellectual Property Rights Law of India. Gone are the days when people used to wait for days together for a minor remedy. Courts in India are fully capable of granting quick remedies to the ones in need be it a big multinational or a small organization.