Monday, November 25, 2013

Iskcon takes on Iscon Mega Mall over trademark

AHMEDABAD: In a unique row over trademark, a temple has sued a real estate developer for using its name and logo to benefit from the goodwill generated by the religious organization.

The International Society for Krishna Consciousness ( Iskcon) has filed a suit against its neighbour Iscon Mega Mall and its company J P Infrastructure Pvt Ltd for using a similar name and logo. The temple authorities have accused the realty firm of taking undue advantage of their goodwill among people and want the court to restrain them.

The trust had issued a notice to the firm for using 'Iscon' as its name after it set up a mall next door and approached a civil court earlier this year.

"The reputation of the trademark has been misappropriated by the realty firm in such a way that it misrepresents itself as being the owner of the trademark or having some nexus/affiliation with the temple trust," the temple's petition said.

Claiming that it was an infringement of its trademark and "the cause of action is recurring day by day", the temple has sought an interim stay order. The court issued a show-cause notice to the realty firm in May.

The realty firm filed an application demanding dismissal of the suit. It argued that the suit was a composite one with three-fold prayer, and it is not maintainable. It also claimed that its logo is slightly different with 'JP' written in it, which distinguishes it from the temple's logo.

"Since the organization has its own temple near our various schemes i.e. Iscon Park, Iscon Plaza, Iscon Mega Mall, it could not have been unaware of the use of trademark Iscon, particularly when it also has various other residential, commercial and retail projects just near the temple since the year 2000," the realty firm argued in its reply.

The court did not accept the realty firm's arguments and rejected its application last month. However, the main suit in the matter is still pending.

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