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Pidilite Gets HC Relief in Case Over Design of Product Container

The Bombay HC has restrained Ahmedabad-based listed firm Astral from manufacturing, distributing or selling its solvent cement products ‘Solvobond’ in containers identical to those used for M-Seal PV Seal until further orders. Mumbai based Pidilte Industries, the maker of Fevicol and Fevikwik adhesive brands, had approached the court to restrain Astral from allegedly infringing its registered design for container/packaging and ‘passing off’ for its solvent cement products M-Seal PV Seal.

Passing off in IPR law means making a false representation that could induce a person to believe goods or services are those of another:

“If the injunction as sought is not granted, then grave loss, harm and prejudice would be caused to the plaintiff (Pidilite) as the defendant (Astral) would then continue to use the impugned container with the design of the plaintiff,” observed Justice Firdosh Pooniwalla in his order of June 13. “The balance of convenience is also in favour of the plaintiff and against the defendant.” The court, however, while granting temporary relief to Pidilite, stayed the operation of the order for two weeks. In this case, Pidilite is represented by Nishad Nadkarni and Khushboo Jhunjhunwala of Khaitan & Co. Astral is represented by law firm Remfry & Sagar: Before the court’s order, Pidilite through senior advocate Virag Tulzapurkar and advocate Hiren Kamod argued that in 2024, the company came across a range of solvent cement products manufactured by Astral under the brand Solvobond, which are allegedly an imitation and are deceptively similar to its distinctive M-Seal PV Seal brand in shape, configuration, caps including vertical lines and extended ridges thereon and multiple grooves below the cap connecting to the seal of the container.

 “The controller of design had its M-Seal granted a certificate of registration to the plaintiff as proprietor of the registered de- sign,” argued Pidilite, adding that its design, when considered as a whole, pole, is distinctive and unique and has an appeal to the eye. The novelty of its design resides in the shape and configuration thereof. Appearing for Astral, senior counsel Ashish Kamat and advocate Rashmin Khandekar argued a as the container of as far the plaintiff is concerned, both the registered de sign and the container to which the design is applied are commonplace and have nothing unusual or capricious or catchy about them.

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