The Delhi High Court awarded ₹3.5 lakh to PUMA, a German Multinational Corporation, in a trademark infringement suit against a local trader who is using PUMA’s trademark.

The bench of Justice Anish Dayal relied on the decision in Koninlijke Philips and ors v. Amazestore where according to the Court, the deciding Court laid down certain standards for grant of damages, as part of the said standards, this situation would be of a repeated knowing infringer causing minor/major impact to the plaintiff. In this case, costs plus partial/compensatory damages are to be awarded.

Advocate Ranjan Narula appeared for the Appellant.

The Plaintiff, PUMA SE filed an application under Order XIIIA and Order VIII Rule 10 r/w Section 151 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 seeking a decree against the defendant, Ashok Kumar Trading when no one appeared post issuance of summons. An ad-interim ex-parte injunction was also granted in favour of the plaintiff.

The Court noted that after the said order a Local Commissioner was appointed to visit the premises after which he submitted a report which stated that a total of 383 pairs of lowers/track pants bearing the impugned mark ‘PUMA’ were found at the premises along with 64 stickers bearing the mark ‘PUMA’.

The Court mentioned the decision in Puma SE v. Ashok Kumar, 2023 SCC OnLin and the earlier decision in Hindustan Unilever Limited v. Reckitt Benckiser India Limited, and according to the Court, courts usually grant notional or compensatory damages, unless there are extenuating circumstances, and overwhelming evidence of wrongdoing, when punitive damages can be awarded.

The Court noted that the defendant would be identified as a first-time-knowing infringer since there is no other evidence that there is repeated infringement. According to the Court, as a result, the proportionate award in favour of the plaintiff will be injunction and partial costs.

Accordingly, the Court granted award and disposed of the suit.

Cause Title: PUMA SE v. Ashok Kumar Trading as R.K. Industries


Adv. Ranjan Narula, Adv. Aishani Singh, Adv. Shivangi Kohli

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