Indian company wins 'mind-tree.com' dispute

International

A sole panellist at the World Intellectual Property Organization's Arbitration and Mediation Centre has found in favour of Mindtree Consulting, an Indian technology company, in its cybersquatting case against a Nepalese individual who had registered and used the domain name 'mind-tree.com'.

The panellist, Susanna Leong, ruled in Mindtree Consulting v Rajesh Shrestha that all three elements required by the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy for the transfer of a domain name had been met, namely:

  • the domain name is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which the complainant has rights;

  • the registrant has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and

  • the domain name was registered and is being used in bad faith.

In particular, Leong concluded that it was unlikely that Shrestha had been unaware of the strong reputation and distinctiveness of Mind Tree's mark and trade name. Thus, it could be concluded that the domain name had been registered in bad faith. Also, the fact that Shrestha traded under the name Mind-tree Solutions was held to be irrelevant. Leong found that he had no justifiable reason to operate under that name.

Pravin Anand, Anand & Anand, Mumbai

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