Delhi HC awards Rs 20 lakh costs to Louis Vuitton in trademark infringement case against banned Chinese e-shopping portal
In a trademark infringement action brought by Louis Vuitton Malletier against a Chinese online shopping platform, the Delhi High Court recently awarded costs of Rs. 20 lakh to the French luxury fashion house.
When the case was first called on July 3, 2020, Futuretimes Technology India Private Limited and others had pledged before the HC that the URLs on which the infringing products are hoisted would be removed. However, when the case was called on March 24, the high court found that despite the undertaking, the goods were still available online on the website which “clearly contains the use of the various design and word marks” of Louis Vuitton.
On March 24, the high court had “permanently barred” Futuretimes Technology and others from manufacturing, selling and offering for sale, directly or indirectly, goods, including face masks etc., bearing the trademarks of Louis Vuitton on their web portal “www.clubfactory”. .com’ or any other portal managed by them. By the same order, the high court had further ordered the Ministry of Information Technology and the Department of Telecommunications to issue instructions to all internet service providers to block ‘www.clubfactory.com‘ so the same is not accessible via VPN or other platforms.
Club Factory is a Chinese e-shopping platform that was banned by the Indian government in June 2020.
Louis Vuitton Malletier had moved the high court in a lawsuit claiming that Futuretimes Technology India Private Limited and others “engaged in the sale of unauthorized products” by selling Louis Vuitton brands on www.clubfactory.com, thereby violating the Louis Vuitton brand and various other appliance brands. The fashion house had also sought an interim order restricting the sale of its products on the Club Factory website.
On November 3, when the case was called again, Louis Vuitton Malletier told a single judge from Judge Prathiba Singh’s bench that “due to a certain sensitivity” they only wanted to seek costs in this case instead of damages. The fashion house claimed a total cost of Rs. 32,29,416/-. The HC then said, “Given the facts of this case, the costs of Rs. 20,00,000/- are awarded in favor of the claimants. No other relief is sought by the plaintiff”.