Delhi High Court: A Single Judge Bench of C. Hari Shankar, J. granted ex parte ad interim injunction to Sukam Systems (P) Ltd. For its mark ‘Su-Kam’ and restrained the defendant from manufacturing, selling, offering for sale, advertising or directly or indirectly dealing in any products or services bearing the impugned trademarks ‘Snow-Kam’.
The plaintiff owned the mark ‘Su-Kam’ and ithad been used since 1998. It was submitted that this Court in Su-Kam Power Systems Ltd. v. Kunwer Sachdev, 2019 SCC OnLine Del 10764, recognized the exclusive ownership of the plaintiff over the ‘Su-Kam’trade mark. The plaintiff asserted that the ‘Su-Kam’ trade mark was an invented and coined mark which, therefore, was entitled to a higher degree of protection under the Trademarks Act, 1999. Further, it was asserted that the ‘Su-Kam’ trademarks hadattained tremendous goodwill and reputation and formed a source identifier for the plaintiff, and they were indelibly associated in the minds of the public with the plaintiff’s goods like inverters and batteries.
Defendant was using the trade mark ‘Snow-Kam’ as well as imitation of plaintiff’s logo and trade dress. Defendant applied for registration of the alleged infringing mark ‘Snow-Kam’ under Class 9, which had been opposed by a former promoter of plaintiff. However, plaintiff had disputed the right of that promoter to claim any rights in respect of plaintiff’s registered trade mark, and had reserved its right to proceed against that promoter.
Analysis, Law, and Decision
The Court noted that prima facie, the defendant’s marks, trade dress and logo were imitative of the plaintiff’s and amounted to an infringement of the plaintiff’s registered trade marks. It was also noted that the defendants were seeking to capitalize on the goodwill associated with the plaintiff’s marks. The Court opined that “the defendant’s marks were substantially similar to the registered marks of the plaintiff and the only real difference was in the colour of the batteries, giving rise to a clear possibility of confusion in the mind of an unwary customer of average intelligence and imperfect recollection”.
The Court held that a clear prima facie case of infringement and passing off, against the defendants and in favour of the plaintiff was, made out. Therefore, the Court granted an ex parte ad interim injunction restraining the defendant as well as its associates, partners, servants, distributors etc. from manufacturing, selling, offering for sale, advertising or directly or indirectly dealing in any products or services bearing the impugned trademarks ‘Snow-Kam’, ‘Big Conqueror Tubular Battery’ and ‘Big Warrior Tubular Battery’, which infringed the plaintiff’s registered trademark and trade dress.
The matter would next be listed on 20-2-2023.
[Sukam Systems (P) Ltd. v. Lithium Power Energy (P) Ltd., 2022 SCC OnLine Del 4400, decided on 1-12-2022]
Advocates who appeared in this case :
For the Plaintiff: AdvocatePravin Anand;
For the Defendant: Advocate Nipun Kumar.