Madras HC rejects Kerala SRTCs exclusive use claim for KSRTC against Karnataka SRTC
Karnataka SRTC applied for a Trade Mark Certificate for using 'KSRTC'. They received the certificate from the Government of India's Trade Mark Registry in 2013, retroactively effective from November 1, 1973 | File Photo

Madras HC rejects Kerala SRTC's exclusive use claim for 'KSRTC' against Karnataka SRTC

Bengaluru, Dec 15 (PTI) The Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation on Friday said there is no legal prohibition for use of 'KSRTC' by it in the wake of the Madras High Court dismissing Kerala State Road Transport Corporation’s claim for exclusive use of the abbreviation.

In a statement, Karnataka SRTC said they had applied for grant of Trade Mark Certificate for use of ‘KSRTC’ abbreviation. The Corporation was granted Trade Mark Certificates by the Trade Mark Registry of Government of India in 2013 with user date from November 1, 1973.

Copyright was also obtained from the Registrar of Copyrights, Government of India for use of ‘KSRTC’ Logo and ‘Gandabherunda art’ (Logo of the state government), Karnataka SRTC said.

Thereafter, Kerala SRTC had challenged this before Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB) in Chennai, said the Karnataka SRTC.

The Karnataka SRTC said its contention was that Kerala SRTC knew that they (Karnataka) were using the mark for the past 42 years and had accepted it and hence were not entitled to apply for a declaration that the registration of the later trade mark is invalid.

The Kerala RTC too had obtained registration of the marks in 2019 claiming prior use, the Karnataka SRTC said, adding that the matters which were pending before the IPAB were transferred to the High Court of Madras in Chennai after abolition of IPAB by the central government.

On December 12, the High Court of Madras dismissed the applications filed by Kerala RTC and ruled in favour of KSRTC (Karnataka), the statement said.

As the Kerala RTC's case was dismissed, the Karnataka RTC has no legal hurdle to use the abbreviation 'KSRTC' in future also, the statement added. PTI

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