The Delhi High Court has granted permanent injunction against 'ANINEWSINDIA' in a trademark infringement suit filed by news agency 'ANI'.
Justice Pratibha M Singh permanently injuncted the owners of ANINEWSINDIA from using the trademark 'ANI' or any other derivatives including the logo form, either with or without the word 'news' and 'India' as 'aninewsindia', 'aninews' or in any other manner on the internet or social media platform including Instagram and Facebook.
The suit was filed by ANI seeking protection of the registered trademark 'ANI' which was adopted by it in the year 1971.
The Defendant No.1 Vinay G. David and Defendant No.2 Sanjay Halder had launched a website by the name www.aninewsindia.com representing themselves as 'ANINEWSINDIA'. Other Defendants were search engine Google LLC and Meta Platforms Inc. formally known as Facebook Inc. where the Defendants had used the mark 'ANI' in their respective accounts.
It was the the Plaintiff's case that it's registered mark ANI was also an integral part of it's registered domain names www.aniin.com and www.aninews.in since 1999 and 2010 which were used uninterruptedly since then.
The Court had vide order dated 12th January, 2022 restrained the owners of ANINEWSINDIA from using the Plaintiff's mark on the domain name and website as also on the Facebook and social media profiles. Accordingly, the Registrar of domain name www.aninewsindia.com was directed to block the domain name 'www.aninewsindia.com' till further orders while Google LLC was directed to de-index the website.
"The services being offered by Defendant Nos.1 and 2 are also identical i.e., news related services. Thus, the Plaintiff's rights would be severely affected apart from the fact that internet users could be deceived into believing that Defendant Nos.1 and 2, their various platforms, including the website and the social media platform, are connected and or affiliated with the Plaintiff," the Court said.
Taking note of the fact that the owners of ANINEWSINDIA had chosen not to appear before the Court, Meta Platforms Inc. was directed to deactivate and suspend the Facebook page of Mr. Vinay G. David.
"The Plaintiff does not pray for rendition of accounts and damages in the present suit. Accordingly, Defendant Nos.1 and 2 who are proceeded ex parte today are permanently injuncted from using the mark 'ANI' or any other derivatives including the logo form of 'ANI' as depicted in the plaint and in this order, either with or without the word 'news' and 'India' as 'aninewsindia', 'aninews' or in any other manner whatsoever including on the internet or any other social media platform including Instagram and Facebook, including the domain name containing the word 'ANI'," the Court ordered.