Rule 16 (3) of the Copyright Rule 1958 states that:
"The person applying for registration shall give notice of
his application to every person who claims or has any interest in
the subject matter of the copyright or dispute the right of the
applicant to it."
This provision came under the spotlight in the case of Preeti
Supari v. Anil Tulsani and Anr 2009 (39) PTC 710 (CB). This matter
lay before the Copyright Board on orders from the Delhi High Court
to expedite the proceedings pending before them.
Preeti Supari had moved the Delhi High Court against the Anil
Tulsani seeking relief of permanent injunction restraining them
from using the impugned trademarks or labels, namely, Mirch Masala,
Balle Balle, Mix Fruit Balls, Nagpuri Santra, Chatak Matak, Aam
Modak, Love Line mango and Garam Masala. Preeti Supari had moved a
prayer for grant of interim injunction restraining the Tulsani from
using the impugned trademarks/labels pending the disposal of the
suit. The Hon'ble High Court restrained the Tulsani from using
the impugned trademarks/labels till the next date of hearing.
However, dismissing the Writ Petition as withdrawn, the Delhi High
Court ordered the Board to expeditiously adjudicate on the
Preeti Supari, before the Board claimed that eight separate
letters to the Registrar of Copyrights had been sent, requesting
them to not entertain any requests by Tulsani for registration of
copyrights in the impugned trademarks or labels without prior
notification to Preeti Supari. She produced copies of all the eight
letters duly acknowledged in person by the office of the Registrar
of Copyrights. Preeti Supari also claimed to have sent copies of
all the eight letters to the Assistant Registrar of Trademarks for
his information. After receiving the letters of Preeti Supari, the
Assistant Registrar of Trademarks issued show cause notices to Anil
Tulsani asking as to justify as to why the No Objection
Certificates granted to him under Section 45, be not liable for
Preeti Supari also submitted copies of these notices, averring
that two individuals couldn't be the proprietors of the same
concern at the same time. She took the plea of ground of lack of
originality and violations of statutory rights relating to the No
Anil Tulsani objected to filing of a joint application for
rectification of six artistic works. He said that there should have
been separate applications for all registrations. He had further
filed an FIR against Preeti Supari, the facts regarding which was
concealed by her while obtaining the ex parte injunction.
The Board also observed that Anil Tulsani had given a false date
of registration in all the six impugned applications. Instead of
2004, 2001 has been given as the date of registration. But Anil
Tulsani claimed that the impugned artistic works had been conceived
and adopted by the respondents much prior the petitioner and he has
also submitted affidavits of the artists who had created these
Anil Tulsani objected to the combined application for the
rectification of the six artistic works filed by Preeti Supari. He
argued that for each work there should have been a separate and
The Board held that there was nothing wrong if the impugned
works are put through a common petition since it helps and promotes
larger question of reducing litigation and costs. The Board further
held that in matters of disputes relating to trademarks or labels,
issues relating to rights of private persons are involved, but more
importantly, the public at large has a stake in these issues. The
Board in view of Rule 16(3) of the Copyright Rules, 1958 stated
that a duty was cast upon Anil Tulsani to put Preeti Supari to
notice about his proposed applications. Thus, Anil Tulsani was held
to have violated the statutory provisions mandated by the Copyright
Act and accordingly ordered that the Registrar expunge entries
relating to all six registrations.
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