Friday, July 31, 2015

Writers’ Victory – Kunal Kohli Loses “Phir Se”

The Supreme Court has proved in a landmark ruling that writers need no longer cower in fear in the face of large production houses. The Apex Court has ruled in favor of scriptwriter Jyoti Kapoor and has found that director/producer Kunal Kohli’s upcoming film “Phir Se” shares similarities with Ms. Kapoor’s script “R.S.V.P”.

Ms. Kapoor conceptualized and came up with the plot sometime in 2010.  She registered the synopsis of R.S.V.P with the Film Writers Association (FWA) in Mumbai in 2011. The final draft was registered in 2012.  Ms. Kapoor approached Mr. Kohli through an agent and emailed the script to him thereafter. However, they could not come to an agreement and thus negotiations failed. Subsequently, Ms. Kapoor approached another production house and entered a formal agreement with them. At this time she came across the film “Phir Se” and realized there were strong similarities between her script and the storyline of the film. Accordingly, she filed a complaint with the Film Writers Association for plagiarism and infringement of copyright.

The Bombay High Court ruled in favor of Ms. Kapoor in 2015. It analysed storylines of both the film and the script and found that the individual elements in Ms. Kapoor’s script were not original but together they made a unique story. The Court concluded that Mr. Kohli had used information that was shared privately with him. The Court decided damages would be insufficient as the screenplay was unpublished and thus, granted an interim order against Mr. Kohli preventing him from releasing the film.

Ms. Kapoor moved the Apex Court when the Bombay High Court vacated the stay in return for a guarantee of Rs. 50 Lakhs. The Supreme Court ruled in Ms. Kapoor’s favor and has directed Mr. Kohi to pay Rs. 25 Lakhs as compensation in addition to giving the credit to Ms. Kapoor for the idea.

- Nayanika Singhal 

Friday, July 24, 2015

Importance of Trade Mark Registration in the Retail Sector

With the advent of globalization and expansion of trade and industry, protection of intellectual property is essential for any business enterprise. A strong brand acts as a source identifier and is an invaluable asset for the enterprise. In the retail sector, creating and protecting a brand image is an absolute necessity. Apart from creating goodwill, a brand image is vital in aiding the retailer in venturing into new markets.  It is very important for the retailer to choose his brand wisely and take appropriate measures in protecting it. The strongest way to protect a brand is a registered trademark. A trademark may consist of words, letters, symbol, logo, combination of colors, shapes etc. to name a few. A trade mark registration confers upon the owner, the exclusive right to use his brand. Registration also empowers the owner to obtain legal relief in case his trademark is infringed by others. Another important facet of registration is that the owner has the power to assign his goods to others. Even though it isn’t an absolute necessity for owners to apply for trade mark registration, it is highly recommended since the process of enforcing rights becomes much easier and cheaper.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015


Trademark laws in India
Trademark is a distinct sign which symbolises the value or goodwill associated with the goods and services which can be assessed by the extent to its perception in the public mind with regards to its quality and specific source.
The Trademark Act 1940, was the first statute on Trademark in India later The trade and merchandise Act 1958 was in force which was again revised by the new Trademark Act 1999 governed by Trademark Rules 2002, and this new act is fully compatible with the international standard of TRIPS Agreement. The latest Act of Trademark has implied a check on the unfair business practices.
The purpose of Trademark can be categorized in the following aspects:
Distinguishing one’s good and services from those of another
Indicating origin
Assures quality
Goodwill in market
In this competitive world it has become important to establish something unique which can be perceived by the public. Trademark works at an international scale to maintain the equal standards of protection for everyone. Most people believe that registering a business or company name gives them exclusive ownership of that name but that’s a myth, Trademark is a safer way to achieve exclusive right of ownership.
Ankita Upadhyay.

Friday, July 3, 2015

Copyright Registration in India

Copyright subsists in all original pieces of work as soon as it is created. Copyright in India is recognized under the Berne Convention 1886. Copyright registration is beneficial because of the evidentiary value it holds in case the creator in involved in legal proceedings related to his/her work.

Copyright protection in India is governed under the Copyright Act 1957 and and is granted to authors of literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works and producers of cinematographic films and sound recordings. It is pertinent to note that here is no copyright protection for ideas, procedures, methods of operation or mathematical concepts as such. As per the Copyright Act, the author or creator of the work is the first owner of copyright. An exception to this rule is that, the employer becomes the owner of copyright in circumstances where the employee creates a work in the course of and scope of employment. Copyright also subsists in computer programmes as it falls under the ambit of “literary works” which is protected under the Copyright act.

In India copyright is protected for a period of sixty years from the beginning of the calendar year next following the year in which the author dies. When it comes to original literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works the 60 years is calculated from the year following the death of the author. In the case of cinematographic films, sound recordings, photographs, posthumous publications the 60 year period is counted from the date of publication.

The procedure for the registration of Copyright in India is as follows:

· Application for registration is to be made on Form IV.

· Separate applications should be made for registration of each work;

· Each application should be accompanied by the requisite fee

· The Power of Attorney signed by the party and accepted by the advocate should also be enclosed.