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If Functional Feature Of Design Can Be Achieved Through Different Form Of Article Also, Design Is Not Barred

The Subject Matter Suit:
The Subject Matter Suit for Infringement of Design was filed by the Petitioner on the basis of their registered Design titled as Sonic Nozzle , which they have registered in the year 2017.

The Petitioner's Argument:
Suit was filed against the Respondents on the ground that they have been using identical Sonic Nozzle Design in relation to their article.

According to the Petitioner, the Respondents have copied all the essential features of Petitioner's Registered Design.

Hence the Respondent are liable to be restrained from infringing the Registered Design of the Petitioner.

Respondent's Argument:
The Respondent appeared and argued that subject matter design does not bear any aesthetic feature.

Besides this, the subject matter Design was also।challenged on the ground of functional in nature and prior published.

The Respondent also filed invoices, photographs of products etc in order to show the subject matter Design to be prior published.

The Judgement:
After hearing the argument of parties, the Ex parte injunction was initially granted, which was later confirmed by the subject matter Order. The Reasons for confirming the ex parte injunction was as follows:

The Copying Of Essential Features:
The Respondents found to have used copied all the essential features of Petitioner's Registered Design.

The Functional Festure Of Design:
For the argument of functionality to succeed, the Respondents has to establish that it is only shape of the Petitioner , which results in the functionality.

In the present case, the Respondent has failed to establish that it is the only shape of design, which results in desired function.

In the case at hand, the court rejected the argument of functionality on the ground that the particular function of the article can also be obtained through different form of Design also.

Prior Publication:
The Respondent have filed photographs , without bearing any date, hence not relevant for prior publication.

Similarly the Court found that most of invoices filed by the Respondent, were subsequent to the date of design registration.

While the earlier invoices were pertaining to other design.

Case Law Discussed:
Date of Judgment: 20.06.2023
Case No:IA NO: GA/1/2023 and EOS/4/2022
Neutral Citation No: NA
Name of Hon'ble Court: Hon'ble High Court of Calcutta
Name of Hon'ble Judge: Ravi Krishan Kapur, H.J.
Case Title: The Raring Corporation Vs Neogie Engineering Works Pvt. Ltd.

Information contained herein is being shared in the public Interest. The same should not be treated as substitute for legal advice as it is subject to my subjectivity and may contain human errors in perception, interpretation and presentation of the facts and law involved herein.

Written By: Advocate Ajay Amitabh Suman, IP Adjutor - Patent and Trademark Attorney
Email: [email protected], Ph no: 9990389539

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