The Delhi High Court, recently, restrained Shubhom Juneja (“Defendant”) from using the mark ROYAL QUEEN and a green trade dress which are identical/similar to ADS Spirits (P) Ltd.’s (“Plaintiff”) ROYAL GREEN mark and trade dress, on and in relation to alcoholic beverages.
The Plaintiff submitted that it is the proprietor of several registrations for ROYAL GREEN and ROYAL GREEN-formative marks for, inter alia, alcoholic beverages. Further, as per the Plaintiff, in 2014, it introduced a distinctive green trade dress and packaging for its goods. It was the Plaintiff’s case that the Defendant was earlier selling its alcoholic beverages under the mark ROYAL QUEEN in a packaging dissimilar to the Plaintiff’s packaging, in the state of Punjab. However, the Defendant had introduced its product in Delhi under a green packaging similar to that of the Plaintiff.
The Defendant contended that the colour green and the suffix ROYAL are common to trade in relation to alcoholic beverages. The Defendant also sought to rely on its registration for the ROYAL GREEN Device mark.
The court was of the opinion that it, prima facie, appears that the Defendant’s new trade dress is nearly identical to the Plaintiff’s trade dress. The court also stated that the likelihood of confusion was exacerbated by the phonetic similarity between the rival marks. As regards the Defendant’s registration, the court noted that the present case does not concern the Defendant’s device mark and therefore the registration is not of relevance. As regards the question of the colour green and the suffix ROYAL being common to trade, the court stated that this would be matter of trial.
In light of the above, the court was satisfied that a prima facie case of infringement and passing off was made out in favour of the Plaintiff, and accordingly restrained the defendant from advertising, manufacturing, selling, etc. , alcoholic beverages, under the mark ROYAL QUEEN and/or the new green trade dress or any other mark/trade dress which is deceptively similar to the registered trademark and trade dress of the Plaintiff.