Barodawala Mansion, 81, Dr. Annie Besant Road, Mumbai

IPR weekly Highlights (37)

8 (Demo)
TRADEMARK
NEW ZEALAND REJECTS INDIA CERTIFICATION OF TRADEMARK APPLICATION FOR BASMATI RICE

‘BASMATI’ signifies a fragrant long-grain rice variety traditionally cultivated in the Indian subcontinent. The Government of India filed a trademark application for Basmati rice in the Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand (‘IPONZ’) to preserve its cultural and traditional significance. IPONZ concluded in the evidence produced by the Indian Government that other rice-producing countries including Pakistan play a significant role in the market of Basmati rice.

Thus, the IPONZ refused the application citing that fragrant rice is also grown internationally and the growers have a legitimate right to use the term ‘BASMATI’.

TRADEMARK
STARBUCKS SUES MARIJUANA RETAILER OVER TRADEMARK INFRINGEMENT

Recently, the global coffeehouse chain Starbucks (hereinafter referred to “Complainant”) initiated a trademark suit against a marijuana retailer operating under the name “Starbuds Flowers”. The lawsuit has been filed in the US District Court with the Plaintiff alleging that Starbud’s logo is “confusingly similar and nearly identical” to its iconic green siren emblem. The Complainant states that Starbud’s use of a double-ringed green circle, capital letters and a siren image, along with a phonetically similar name, is an attempt to imitate the Starbucks brand. The Complainant contends that Starbuds “clearly trades on the recognition of the extensive consumer recognition of Starbucks,” according to the filing.
Further, the Complainant learned about Starbuds in March’23 and sent a cease-and-desist notice to the company. It also issued a takedown notice under the Digital Millennium and Copyright Act to Starbud’s website in January 2024. However, all attempts failed leading the Complainant to file the instant trademark infringement suit.

Reference: 

PATENT
INDIAN PATENT OFFICE REJECTS JOHNSON AND JOHNSON’S PATENT APPLICATION AS REPORTED IN TIMES OF INDIA ON 6th JULY 2024

In 2017, US major Johnson & Johnson (‘J&J’) had filed a patent application for the pediatric formulation of Bedaquiline. Bedaquiline treats multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) in patients who have failed to respond to initial Tuberculosis (‘TB’) medications and require higher-level treatment. A civil society group, The Delhi Network of Positive People, and a Mumbai-based TB survivor Ganesh Acharya filed a ‘pre-grant opposition’ against the patent application. One of the grounds of opposition was ‘lack of inventive step’ as at least seven things about this formulation were already known before the patent application was filed. The Controller allowed the aforesaid ground and stated that the present invention is obvious to a person skilled in this art. The second accepted ground was the lack of any synergistic effect in the drug claimed in the patent application. The effect of the drug as a whole was merely the sum of its ingredients when put together. Hence, the patent application was rejected.
This decision is a significant victory for children suffering from TB, as more affordable versions of TB drugs will be soon available in the country.

Reference: 

COPYRIGHT
ASIAN NEWS INTERNATIONAL SUES PRESS TRUST INDIA FOR COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT

In an interesting news, Asian News International (ANI) has filed a copyright infringement and plagiarism case against Press Trust India (PTI) pertaining to the videos of a Delhi-Darbhanga Spice jet flight’s air conditioner breakdown. In its complaint, ANI alleges that its video journalist had captured footage inside the flight and posted it on its X account. Soon after, PTI also published identical videos.ANI urged that PTI must remove the videos, acknowledge ANI’s ownership, issue an apology, and notify all newspapers that incorrectly credited PTI for the content. Contrarily, PTI argued that no apology was required and that the video was third-party content.
In the instant case, ANI has demanded damages of 2 crore and a permanent injunction preventing PTI from copying its original work.

COPYRIGHT
TRUMP SNEAKER KNOCKOFFS INITIATE LAWSUIT IN FEDERAL COURT OVER COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT

In February, Donald Trump launched Trump Sneakers line under 45Footwear LLC (hereinafter “Company”). Recently, the Company initiated a lawsuit in the Federal Court in Arizona alleging the sale and promotion of counterfeit shoes by various individuals and business entities. The defendants are unnamed, the Company states that they will be identified in a forthcoming sealed document. The lawsuit alleges that the defendants are individuals,
unincorporated business associations, and business entities primarily located outside the U.S., operating through commercial websites hosted domestically.
The Company pled before the Court to ban any illicit reproduction along with prohibition on advertising or selling counterfeit sneakers. Further, the Company sought the Defendants to pay them “any and all profits” related to the infringement of trademark law or for the court to award $2 million for “each and every use” of the mark counterfeited by each defendant and $25,000 for each copyright violation.

Related Posts

Leave a comment