PepsiCo protects AQUAFINA in Delhi High Court

India

The Delhi High Court has granted US-based PepsiCo a permanent injunction preventing Rashmi Sales Corporation from using on its water purifiers PepsiCo's AQUAFINA trademark. In addition, the court fined the Delhi-based company Rs15,000 for passing off.

PepsiCo became aware of Rashmi's unauthorized use of the AQUAFINA mark in November 2001. It alleged that Rashmi was guilty of the common law offence of passing off as the Indian company misrepresented to its customers that it was affiliated with PepsiCo, allowing the company to cash in on PepsiCo's reputation and goodwill.

The Delhi High Court's decision in this case is indicative of the Indian judiciary's increased willingness to invoke the fundamental principles of common law in granting injunctions in favour of foreign trademark owners when their rights have been violated.

Gladys Mirandah, Ella Cheong Mirandah & Sprusons, Singapore

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