‘Tata’ is a well-known mark, reaffirms Delhi HC judgment in Tata Sons Limited v. Ram Niwas & Ors

The Plaintiff filed the present suit inter alia seeking a decree of permanent injunction restraining the Defendants from directly or indirectly dealing in the business of providing transport; packaging and storage of goods; travel arrangement, packaging / moving services under the domain name and/or using any trademark/ description/name/device bearing the trademark TATA or any other mark which is deceptively similar to the Plaintiff’s trademark TATA. [The judgment is available here]

It is contended that the Plaintiff has been continuously using the trademark and trade name TATA since its inception in 1917. The Defendant is neither a related entity of TATA group nor given the right to use TATA. The Defendants are engaged in the business of providing transport; packaging and storage of goods; travel arrangement, packaging / moving services under the name and style TATA PACKERS AND MOVERS. They were also operating via their website

The Court examined printouts from the website of the Trade Marks Registry and noted that the  Plaintiff is the registered proprietor of the mark TATA in various classes Including Class 39 (Transport; Packaging and storage of goods; travel arrangement). The Court observed that the mark TATA has been used by the Plaintiff for a long period of time and it enjoys reputation and goodwill and has acquired the status of a “well-known” mark. Considering the fact situation, the Court came to the conclusion that the “Defendants are carrying on their business in the same field as that of the Plaintiff and are infringing the registered mark of the Plaintiff, TATA, by adopting a deceptively similar trade name TATA PACKERS AND MOVERS and website” Accordingly, the suit was decreed in favour of the Plaintiff.


Mathews P. George

Mathews is a graduate of National University of Juridical Sciences, Kolkata. His interest in intellectual property was kindled when he bagged the second position in his second year of Law School (in the prestigious Nani Palkhiwala Essay Competition on Intellectual Property). His stint as a student of Prof. Shamnad Basheer further accentuated his interest in intellectual property. Winner of almost a dozen essay competitions in his Law School days, he was involved in various research and policy initiatives relating to intellectual property. Mathews is, currently, based out of Munich, Germany. He had earlier done his LLM in 'IP and Competition Law' from Munich Intellectual Property Law Centre (jointly run by Max Plank Institute for Innovation and Competition, University of Augsburg, Technical University of Munich and George Washington University, Washington).

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