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IPR weekly Highlights (26)

8 (Demo)
TRADEMARK
YULU V/S ZULU 

Yulu Bikes has filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against Kinetic Green Energy, seeking a temporary injunction. The main argument put forth by Yulu is the use of the name “Zulu” by Kinetic Green for its new line of electric scooters, which Yulu claims is too similar to their own brand name in the same segment. Yulu contends that such similar names could lead to confusion among consumers and potentially damage their brand identity. The lower court denied the injunction request by Yulu. Later, Yulu appealed before the Karnataka High Court. The High Court granted an interim injunction against the use of the mark “Zulu” by Kinetic Green, despite “Zulu” and “Kinetic Green Zulu” being registered marks. The Court based its decision on the prior use/registration of the “Yulu” mark and the triple identity test.

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TRADEMARK
PATANJALI ISSUED A PUBLIC APOLOGY

Patanjali recently issued an “unqualified apology” to the Supreme Court for breaching its earlier commitment regarding misleading advertisements and claims. Patanjali had previously assured the Court that it would refrain from publishing misleading ads or making casual remarks against medicinal systems but the same was not honoured by them. This public apology was issued after SC summoned Baba Ramdev and the MD of Patanjali, Acharya Balkrishna in the matter.

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TRADEMARK
BOEING V/S VIRGIN

Boeing, a significant player in the aerospace industry, has initiated legal proceedings against Virgin Galactic, a space tourism startup, in a U.S. court. The lawsuit alleges that Virgin Galactic unlawfully obtained trade secrets and failed to pay $25 million for its contributions to a new “mothership” project. Boeing claims that Virgin Galactic obtained confidential information through its collaboration with Aurora Flight Sciences, a Boeing subsidiary, on the mothership project. However, Aurora later discovered that the mothership design Virgin Galactic had requested would demand more time and funds than initially anticipated, resulting in the project’s suspension. Boeing contends that Virgin Galactic unjustly held onto proprietary information, such as test data and mathematical equations provided by Boeing, for their benefit. Virgin Galactic has denied all the accusations made against it.

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PATENT
DIFFERENCE IN EXAMINATION AND OPPOSITION PROCEEDINGS CLARIFIED BY THE INDIAN PATENT OFFICE

The Indian Patent Office (IPO) recently dismissed a pre-grant opposition lodged by Agro Tech Foods and proceeded to grant a patent to Francois Berthault, for his unique popcorn box design invention. The patented invention revolves around a distinct box specifically designed for packaging popcorn. Agro Tech Foods strongly contested this opposition, citing various reasons such as prior publication, prior use, obviousness, and insufficiency under Section 25(1) of the Patents Act, in an effort to challenge the patentability of Francois Berthault’s invention. The IPO mentioned that Agro Tech Foods lacked locus standi under Section 14 of the Patents Act, 1970, and that additionally, the opponent’s claims were untenable. This decision made a clear distinction between the examination and opposition processes facilitating a more streamlined and efficient handling of pre-grant oppositions.

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GEOGRAPHICAL INDICATION
KAJI NEMU – ASSAM’S OFFICIAL STATE FRUIT

The State Government of Assam recently designated the ‘Kaji Nemu’ (Citrus Limon), which has a Geographical Indication (GI) tag, as the official State Fruit. Kaji Nemu stands out with its elongated and oblong shape compared to other types of lemons, and it is renowned for its distinct fragrance, antioxidant properties, and health advantages. Deeply rooted in Assamese cuisine, Kaji Nemu is a treasure trove of nutrients that enhances local dishes and promotes well-being. Awarded the GI tag in 2019, this recognition is anticipated to stimulate both the production and export of this fruit.

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