Names of Gods and deities cannot be brand names, court

New Delhi: Hindu god Krishna’s name is
not the exclusive property of any company, the Delhi High Court has
said, while rejecting a trademark-related plea of a milk food company
which wanted a rival to be barred from using the deity’s name on its
products.

A division bench of Justice Pradeep Nandrajog and
Justice Sunil Gaur Monday heard an appeal filed by Delhi-based firm
Bhole Baba against the court’s earlier order declining its claim of
exclusive right over the use of word “Krishna” for dairy products.

Refusing
the prayer of Bhole Baba Milk Food Industries to stop Parul Food
Specialities from using the word “Krishna”, the court said: “The
distinctiveness to which the appellant can lay a claim is to what it has
got registered as a whole and such registration cannot possibly give an
exclusive statutory right to the appellant qua a particular word of
common origin.”

The division bench upheld a single-judge bench’s
order against Bhola Baba’s plea and said: “We are in agreement with the
view taken by the learned single judge not only for the reasons given by
the learned single judge but the additional reason, as in the instant
case, a deity may be associated with a particular kind of goods.”

It
is common knowledge that Lord Krishna, as a child, was known for his
love of milk and butter. This would certainly dilute a proprietary claim
projected by any person in relation to word “Krishna” with dairy
products.

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