Sometimes it feels as if the Supreme Court is running the country. Otherwise why does everything escalate all the way? The SC’s main job is to examine constitutional issues, but it is often and increasingly embroiled in commercial disputes. For instance, an engineering company in Chennai had registered the trademark ‘Coronil’ back in 1993, as an industrial cleaning product. When Patanjali started using the same name for its Covid-19 product, the Chennai firm said you are infringing on my trademark.
Patanjali subsequently toned down its claim, and said it was an immunity boosting product. But this infringement case went all the way to the Supreme Court wherein it ruled the commercial dispute in favour of Patanjali. “In these pandemic times it would be terrible if we restrict the use of the word Coronil,” said the court. Technically the apex court has asked the parties to abide by the decision of the Madras High Court, which is in favour of Patanjali. Of course, there was another issue of the misleading claim in the earlier advertisements of Coronil being a ‘cure’. That too was looked into by the apex court.