Tata Sons Ltd and its subsidiary Tata Infotech Ltd have won a legal battle over domain name www.tatainfotech.in in the Delhi High Court which restrained Arno Palmen from using it in any of its activities.
"The defendant no 1 (Arno Palmen), its servants, agents and assigns and all others acting on behalf of the defendant are restrained from conducting any business or dealing in any manner including using domain name www.tatainfotech.in or the word TATA or any name comprising of the same or deceptively confusingly similar to it regarding any goods, services or domain," Justice M L Mehta said.
The court also asked Key-Systems GmBH, which is an international ICANN accredited registrar for internet addresses, to cancel registration of domain name www.tatainfotech.in, granted to Arno Palmen.
The judgement came on a lawsuit filed by Tata Sons Ltd, the principal investment holding company of Tata Group, which was established in 1917, and its subsidiary Tata Infotech Ltd, seeking to restrain Arno Palmen from using the domain name and trademark term 'TATA'.
The oldest and largest corporate conglomerate with a turnover of $9 billion, in its plea, said the name 'TATA' has been derived from the surname of its founder J Nusserwanji Tata and Palmen cannot be allowed to use "deceptively" similar term or words.
"The name TATA has consistently been associated with and exclusively denotes the conglomeration of companies forming the Tata group, which is known for high quality of products manufactured and/or services rendered by it under the trademark/name TATA and ...House of Tatas comprises over 50 companies which use TATA as a key and essential part of their corporate name," it said.
Tata Infotech Ltd, which was also a party to the case, said it had registered domain name www.tatainfotech.com in January 1998 to "advance its business activities".
The IT major said it came to know on February 21, 2005, that Arno Palmen had got domain name www.tatainfotech.in registered in its favour. The firm said it was deceptively similar to the domain name being used by it.
If anyone uses Tata's trademarks on the internet, it can cause "tremendous loss and damage to their business", the plea said, adding, Tata Infotech has been "the prior user with respect to the said domain name ever since the year 1998."