We reported that the Attukal Bhagawathy Temple Trust (“Trust”) in Kerala had secured trademark
protection for the picture of its deity (Trademark No. 1420800) and the title ‘Sabarimala of Women’ (Trademark No. 1420799) under Class 42 (for temple Services, social services, welfare services and cultural activities). The Division Bench of the Kerala High Court initiated suo moto case against the aforesaid registrations in early 2009 based on a petition faxed by Mr. Praveen Raj. The High Court later appointed Mr. Santhosh Mathew, Partner, M/s. Ninan and Mathew Advocates, as the amicus curiae.The High Court rendered its judgment on the aforesaid matter today. [For my earlier post analysing the legality of grant of trademark, see here].
The Court ended the suo moto proceedings and declined to grant relief on merits. It was clarified that the the grant shall not adversely affect the devotees’ right to worship. The Trust, by virtue of the registration, can restrain others from providing services in the name of the Deity for monetary benefits. However, charitable services in the name of the Deity cannot be restrained.
[As the judgment was delivered only a couple of hours back, I do not have a copy of the judgment. I shall later carry a detailed post on the judgment. Presently, I am just carrying a post on the operative part of the judgment (as I could gather from my sources in Kerala HC).]