Bombay HC grants interim measures to RPG Enterprises in trademark dispute and prevents Kolkata-based company from using trademarks

In an interim measure granted to RPG Enterprises Ltd, promoter of tire and software company CEAT Zensar Technologies, the Bombay High Court recently barred the owners of Kolkata-based RPG Opticals and RPG Pharmacy from using names or any other brand, device, logo, domain name which is identical or deceptively similar to “RPG” until further notice.

On March 21, a single judge bench of Judge Shahrukh J Kathawalla delivered judgment in a commercial intellectual property claim filed by RPG Enterprises Ltd against Riju Ghoshal and his wife Poulami Ghoshal of Kolkata-based RPG Opticals and RPG Pharmacy, claiming that defendants infringed and passed on its trademark and copyright.

Conglomerate RPG Enterprises, through lawyers Hiren Kamod, Kunal Kanungo argued that in 1979 the company adopted the trademark “RPG”, an acronym, derived from the initials of its founder Rama Prasad Goenka and over the years Subsequently, Plaintiff and its group of companies have adopted various stylized/formative trade-marks incorporating the RPG mark for their various goods and services.

Kamod argued that the plaintiff has a long-standing goodwill and reputation and that due to its extensive and continuous use of RPG marks all over India and abroad, the plaintiff has acquired a reputation and reputation substantial and valuable in the RPG Marks over which it has the exclusive right to use.

“Due to Applicant’s diverse business and the substantial investment Applicant makes in supporting and sponsoring various activities and with respect to its RPG Marks, Applicant is no longer limited to any particular class of goods and/or or services, but is associated with and used by the plaintiff in a wide range of categories,” Kamod argued, adding that the plaintiff deserves to be considered a “well-known mark.”

However, lead counsel P Mukherjee, representing defendants Ghoshals, opposed the plea and argued that their logo marks are distinct, having different fonts and colors and that their stylization is different from plaintiff’s RPG logo. and other RPG brands. There is no misleading similarity or likelihood of confusion in the mind of an ordinary consumer, Mukherjee argued.

“RPG comes from the first letter of the names of the defendants Riju and Poulami and the first letter of the last name of the two defendants (Ghoshal),” Mukherjee clarified.

After considering the submissions, Justice Kathawalla said: “If the injunction is not granted, the plaintiff is likely to suffer/continue to suffer irreparable harm. The balance of convenience is equally in favor of the plaintiff and against the defendants. Adoption of the challenged marks by the defendants is prima facie dishonest and therefore there is no equity in favor of the defendant. »

Pending the hearing and final settlement of the lawsuit, the Court prohibited the defendants from using the challenged marks.

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