11 April 2023 7:55 AM GMT
The Delhi High Court has permanently restrained a Rajasthan-based restaurant from using the mark “Sadda Pind”, which is registered in favour of a famous tourist place in Punjab.Justice C Hari Shankar decreed the suit filed by JDM Heritage Lawns Heritage Private Limited after the defendant, Ankit Chawla, undertook not to use “SADDA PIND” mark for his restaurant. It was the case of...
The Delhi High Court has permanently restrained a Rajasthan-based restaurant from using the mark “Sadda Pind”, which is registered in favour of a famous tourist place in Punjab.
Justice C Hari Shankar decreed the suit filed by JDM Heritage Lawns Heritage Private Limited after the defendant, Ankit Chawla, undertook not to use “SADDA PIND” mark for his restaurant.
It was the case of the plaintiff entity that it is the owner of registered trademark “Sadda Pind.” The suit sought to restrain Ankit Chawla, who runs “Sadda Pind Restaurant”, from the "brazen acts" of infringement, passing off, unfair competition and misuse of the “Sadda Pind” name and logo.
While decreeing the suit in favour of the plaintiff, the court imposed punitive costs of Rs. 2 lakhs on Chawla to be deposited in favour of an NGO based in Uttar Pradesh working for underprivileged slum children.
In an order passed on April 10, the court directed Chawla to deposit the costs with the Registrar within a period of eight weeks.
“The defendant shall remove, from all its sites and listings, physical as well as virtual, all references to the aforesaid (Sadda Pind) marks,” the court ordered.
In October last year, the court had temporarily restrained Chawla from using the marks in question. According to the suit before the high court, Sadda Pind is spread over across 12 acres of land in Amritsar, comprising a Punjabi Culture Living Museum and provides dining, accommodation and entertainment among other services.
"It offers informative and immersive paid tours of its traditional rural village project which reflects on the rural life during the pre-1950's era of the geographical location where the property is located," the company owning the project has told the court.
The mark 'SADDA PIND' and the logo as also the various expressions used such as 'SADDA PIND, Jewel of Punjab' 'SADDA PIND, Flavours Celebrations Culture' etc. are all registered trademarks under class 43 since 2015, as per the suit.
Passing the final order in the suit, Justice Shankar observed that after the order of interim injunction was passed, Chawla merely changed the infringing mark to “5ADDA P1ND” instead of discontinuing its use.
“This amounts to no less than cocking a snook at this Court, especially given the observation of this Court, that the mark “5” as used in “5ADDA PIND” is deceptively similar to “S”,” the court said.
Observing that a defendant who behaves in such a fashion cannot be let off lightly, the court said that Chawla is not merely guilty of initial infringement but also of “continuous and obdurate insistence” on persisting with its infringing activity despite several opportunities to discontinue the same.
“In the process, the plaintiff has been dragged into an unnecessary litigation and precious court time has been wasted. There has also been contumacious disobedience of the injunction order dated 7th October 2022 which ought, of rights, to expose the defendant to punitive action under Order XXXIX Rule 2A of the CPC,” the court said.
Title: JMD HERITAGE LAWNS PRIVATE LIMITED vs. MR . ANKIT CHAWLA PROPRIETOR SADDA PIND RESTAURANT
Citation: 2023 LiveLaw (Del) 302
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