A Delhi court has directed a man to pay Rs one lakh as damages to US-based Nike for infringing its trademark by selling products under the name of the popular global sports goods brand. Additional District Judge Anil Antil directed north-west Delhi resident Ashok Kumar to pay the damages to the brand for using a “deceptively similar” trademark and causing confusion in the minds of the public. “Customer base of the products of both the parties are the same. The representation of the marks by the defendant (Singh) tends to cause confusion in the minds of the general public as well as to the customers. “If the defendant is permitted to use the impugned mark which are deceptively similar and confusingly to that of the plaintiff’s company (Nike), it will not only cause wrongful loss to the plaintiff company, but will also cause grave prejudice and harm to public, not to mention about loss to the goodwill of the plaintiff,” the judge said. The court’s order came on a suit filed by company Nike Innovative CV, based in Oregon, USA, alleging that the defendant was found selling sports wear, bags and other goods under its trademark.
The court had earlier granted ex-parte injunction to the company after the defendant failed to appear before it. Nike is engaged in the business of manufacturing, distributing and selling a large variety of goods including footwear, athletic suit, bags, sports goods, watches, eyewear, consumer electronic products and other related products, the suit said. It alleged that Singh had copied and adopted the company’s artistic features including the trademark, label, trade name and domain name and infringed its copyrights.
The court, while deciding the suit in the company’s favour, said “Nothing has come on record to disbelieve the case of the plaintiff or doubt the authenticity and veracity of the document filed on record. The defendant did not come forward to disprove the case of plaintiff his stand.” “I am of the view plaintiff is entitled to punitive damages to the tune of Rs one lakh in his favour and against the defendant,” the judge said.