The Financial Times and Times of India Group trademark battle takes a new turn.
The Supreme Court (SC) today issued a stay order on the related trademark appeal before the High Court (HC) of Bangalore until the appeal before the Chennai-headquartered Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB) is heard in April, and the validity of each party’s trademark is determined.
Last year, the IPAB had struck off the trademark registrations of both UK’s Financial Times and home-grown Times Publishing House for different reasons.
The SC bench, headed by the chief Justice of India Altmas Kabir, has given the stay order after hearing a special leave petition filed by the UK-based Financial Times, today. The Financial Times was represented by senior advocate Harish Salve.
The special leave petition (SLP) was filed by Financial Times last week seeking an adjournment of the RFA proceedings before the Bangalore High Court. Financial Times had filed the RFA You may recall that the RFA proceedings refer to the appeal filed by FT when it lost the suit for trademark infringement and passing off in 2002.
According to the SC, the RFA deals with the issue of whether Times Publishing House has infringed Financial Times’ trademark and since the IPAB order cancelled both party's trademarks, determination of the IPAB appeals is important.
The Sc has adjourned the RFA and given Times Publishing House a few weeks to file its counter statement to the special leave petition filed by Financial Times.
Both the newspaper publishers have been fighting a trademark battle for about two decades now.