Recently, Delhi High Court passed an interim injunction against Harcharan singh & Anr from using any trademark/ trade dress similar to the trade mark “John Deere”.
The plaintiffs Deere group commonly known as John Deere have filed suit for permanent injunction for restraining infringement, dilution of trade marks, passing off trade dress, unfair competition, rendition of accounts, delivery up and damages etc. It was submitted that the plaintiffs are one of the largest and leading agricultural and construction equipment manufacturers in the world including India. It was also claimed that the plaintiffs first adopted its trademark ‘John Deere’ in the year 1837 and has used the said trademark continuously and extensively ever since and further has to its credit registration for the mark/ trade dress in more than 20 countries. The use of the mark John Deere in India dates back to year 1943. Hence the plaintiff claimed that the mark John Deere including trade dress became well known trademark for various reasons.
As a matter of fact, the plaintiff notices in October 2014 that the defendants are manufacturing and selling lookalikes of the plaintiffs’ farm equipment including but not limited to Tractors, Harvesters and Combines under their trading name/mark “SURINDERA” across India who have made use of the plaintiffs’ logo and a trade dress which bears striking resemblance with the plaintiffs’ registered trademarks (the color marks) including trade dress. Hence the plaintiffs prayed for permanent injunction against the defendants.
Hon’ble Judge after perusing the plaint and hearing the plaintiff’s counsel held that it is clear that the plaintiffs have been able to make out a strong prima facie case in their favor. The balance of convenience also lies in favour of the plaintiffs and against the defendants. In case the interim orders are not issued, the plaintiffs would suffer irreparable loss and injury.
Hence the defendants are restrained from manufacturing, selling, offering for sale, advertising agricultural products and/or any other goods and/or services using the plaintiffs’ word mark “John Deere”, the logo, the registered trademark including trade dress and the colour combination thereof and any other mark deceptively similar thereto leading to infringement of the plaintiffs’ word mark “John Deere”, the logo and the trade (colour) mark, overall colour scheme and trade dress in relation to their agricultural equipment and vehicles and/or passing off their products (agricultural equipment) as belonging to the plaintiffs by using marks, colour combination and the consequent trade dress which are identical and/or deceptively similar to the plaintiffs’ word mark “John Deere”; the logo; the trade (colour) mark, overall colour scheme and trade dress.
About the Author: Mr. Abhijeet Deshmukh, Trade Mark Attorney, Khurana & Khurana, Advocates and IP Attorneys and can be reached at:Abhijeet@khuranaandkhurana.com