The Delhi High Court has restrained the Institute of Cost Accountants in India from using the ICAI acronym. The move comes following a trademark infringement lawsuit filed by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India.
The Delhi High Court has also ordered the Institute of Cost Accountants in India to remove ‘ICAI’ from all its platforms.
In its March 21 order, the single-judge bench of Justice C Hari Shankar ordered the Institute of Cost Accountants in India to take down the ‘ICAI’ acronym, wherever the institute has its presence, in a span of three months.
In its suit, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India stated that they have been using the ICAI acronym since 1949.
The institute also cited that the ICAI mark was registered in their name in Class 41 relating to “Education and Providing of Training.”
It was also observed that the Institute of Cost Accountants Of India engages in the same activity with the only difference being that the institute is concerned with Cost Accountants, whereas the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India caters to Chartered Accountants.
In its observation, the court stated that ‘this is a clear prima facie case of infringement, by the usage, by the defendant, of the impugned ICAI acronym, to designate its institution. ‘Initial interest confusion' must occur as a result of the use of infringing mark by the defendant.’
The Institute of Cost and Works Accountants of India was renamed as the Institute of Cost Accountants of India only in 2012.
The Institute of Cost Accountants and the Institute of Chartered Accountants are two apex autonomous accountancy bodies in the country under the Ministry of Corporate Affairs. Both the institutes impart training and education to cost accountants and chartered accountants, respectively.
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