Home / News / India /  Amul trademark: HC grants injunction in favour of Kaira District Co-operative

Mumbai- The Calcutta High Court has granted injunction in favour of Kaira District Co-operative Milk Producers Union Ltd, while restraining Maa Tara Trading Co from infringing on the former’s well-known brand ‘Amul’.

In its petition, Kaira District, which is registered proprietor of brand Amul, had filed an instant suit seeking perpetual injunction restraining Maa Tara, a candle making company for infringement of its registered trademark and passing off.

“The defendants(Maa Tara Trading Co) are not entitled to use the mark Amul or any other mark deceptively similar thereto as that of the plaintiffs(Kaira District). The trade mark Amul has assumed a secondary meaning and as such the trade mark Amul is solely and exclusively identified with the goods and services of the plaintiffs. The said trade mark cannot be utilized by any entity," a bench led by Justice Krishna Rao said.

The court also held that Amul, being recognized as a well-known trade mark, deserves a broader scope of protection against unauthorized use on non-competing goods or services.

Amul is a renowned milk and milk products brand known across India and across the globe. It was registered in 1958. The brand symbolizes a very Indian brand that has become a household name across the length and breadth cutting across class lines, Kaira District claimed in its petition.

The matter came to notice of Kaira District in February 2020 that candles under the mark Amul were being offered on a complementary basis with purchase of cake at a famous cake shop in Kolkata.These candles were sold by Maa Tara Trading Co.

Maa Tara Trading Co has knowingly, deliberately and fraudulently adopted the well-known trade mark Amul including an identical and deceptively similar font/writing style only to take undue advantage of the immense reputation and goodwill acquired by the plaintiffs in respect of the trade mark Amul and make undue profits there from and in doing so have infringed the statutory right of the plaintiff. Amul is a prior used and registered well known trade mark of the Kaira District by which it is identified globally, the court observed.

During the financial year 2018- 2019, the Kaira District has procured on an average 33.34 lakh kg milk per day from more than 1,785 milk societies, aggregating more than 121.69 crore kg of milk for the entire financial year.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Priyanka Gawande

Priyanka Gawande is a senior legal correspondent at Mint. She has worked as legal reporter for four years with both television and digital mediums. Based in Mumbai, she reports on disputes across sectors including banking, corporates and finance. This also includes insolvency and bankruptcy cases and intellectual property rights (IPR) litigation. Her focus also comprises tracking capital markets and disputes relating to securities law. Previously, Priyanka worked with Informist Media for 2.5 years covering major insolvency and bankruptcy cases and corporate developments. She started her career in journalism with Business Television India (BTVi) where she reported on primary markets, banking, finance and insurance companies.
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