Court rules on marks with similar names

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The Supreme Court recently ruled that a proprietor of a trademark cannot enjoy a monopoly over an entire class of goods, particularly when the trademark is not in use in respect of goods that fall under the same class.

In M/S Nandini Deluxe v Karnataka Co-Operative Milk Producer’s Federation Ltd, the Karnataka Co-Operative Milk Producer’s Federation (KMF), which has been producing and selling dairy products since 1985, obtained registration for their mark Nandini. The appellant, Nandini Deluxe, which has been running a chain of restaurants since 1989 under the name of Nandhini, applied for registration of the mark Nandhini in respect of various foodstuffs sold in its restaurants.

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The dispute digest is compiled by Bhasin & Co, Advocates, a corporate law firm based in New Delhi. The authors can be contacted at lbhasin@bhasinco.in or lbhasin@gmail.com. Readers should not act on the basis of this information without seeking professional legal advice.

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