The Bombay High Court refused to grant interim relief to Republic TV in a suit against a Telugu news channel, RTV News for alleged trademark infringement of its logo, “R”.
Justice Manish Pitale refused to grant urgent hearing and interim relief on a suit filed by ARG Outlier Media Private Limited, parent company of Republic TV, seeking use of the logo.
However, in the prayer by Republic TV for interim relief after the Court was informed by RTV News that it had sought permission from the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting for change of its logo.
Republic allegedly sought permission for change of its logo
RTV's holding company, Rayadu Vision Media, informed the Bombay High Court that it had sought permission from the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting for change of its logo. The application for change of logo is pending and Republic had also formally opposed the logo which the Ministry is yet to consider, said its lawyers – Senior Advocate Sharan Jagtiani and advocate Hiren Kamod.
Justice Pitale noted that there was no urgency and kept the application for hearing on urgent relief on June 5.
“It is also an admitted position that as on today, the Defendant (Rayadu) has not started using the changed logo in the context of its satellite news channel. In view of the above, list the application for consideration of ad-interim relief on 05th June, 2023,” the Court said.
The court has also granted liberty to both the parties to mention the petition before the vacation bench in case of urgency.
What is the case all about?
ARG Outlier had filed the suit in March 2023 seeking permanent injunction against Rayudu for infringing and passing off the trademark ‘R.’ owned by Republic TV. The suit has sought Rs100 crore damages against Rayadu for its alleged unfair trade practices leading to damage to Republic.
According to the plea, around February 4, 2023, Republic TV came across a YouTube channel with the name RTV. Republic alleged in the suit that Rayadu copied its trademark and was using a logo that was deceptively similar to its logo, said its lawyers – Senior Advocate Ravi Kadam and advocate Rashmin Khandekar.
Rayadu opposed the suit and claimed in its affidavit that they have been using the logo ‘RTV’ since 2007. It claimed that the channel had been using the term ‘RTV’ much prior to Republic, which was incorporated only in 2016. It further claimed that it was an honest user of the mark as it came from the owner’s family name - Rayadu.
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