Title: MARICO LIMITED v. DABUR INDIA LIMITED
Date of decision: 02.06.2023
Marico Limited filed the claim, citing disapproval of the goodwill and credibility of its product “Nihar Natural Shanti Badam Amla Hair Oil” and registered “Nihar” trademarks, and Justice Navin Chawla issued the ruling.
Marico requested an injunction to prevent Dabur from disseminating or transmitting its WhatsApp or print advertisements about Amla’s hair. Marico Limited filed the claim, citing disapproval of the reputation and good name of its product “Nihar Natural Shanti Badam Amla Hair Oil” and registered “Nihar” trademarks, and Justice Navin Chawla issued the ruling. Marico requested an injunction to prevent Dabur from disseminating or reposting its WhatsApp or print advertisements about Amla’s hair.
The High Court of Delhi has barred Indian global consumer goods business Dabur from distributing their WhatsApp advertising for “Dabur Amla Hair Oil” starring Bollywood actress Deepika Padukone.
Facts of the Case
Concerning the print campaign, Marico said that Dabur’s opening phrase “Yaad Rakhna, Sasta Aawla, balo ko mehenga padega” was scary and dangerous for customers, branding all other cheaper Amla Hair Oils to be deficient and hazardous. It was argued that this constituted general slander.
Although rejecting to enjoin the newspaper piece on the hair oil, the court barred Dabur or any other person working for it from disseminating the WhatsApp message or commercial on Amla hair oil while Marico’s complaint was pending.
Observing that there was no obvious reference to Marico in the contested Print Advertisement, the court stated, “The reference to the plaintiff, if any, can only be drawn by a leap of creativity, but which in my initial view is not warranted.” It is just a warning that there may be serious consequences to buying cheaper Amla Hair Oils–cheaper in both quality and price. The plaintiff’s request for this Court to use its imagination is too broad.”
Courts Analysis and Decision
According to Justice Chawla, advertising should be considered from the perspective of an ordinary customer and his impression of the commercial, which would be to regard the promotion as puffery, as opposed to from the perspective of a sensitive rival like Marcio.
The advertising simply implies that purchasing Amla Hair Oil, which is less expensive or of lower quality, may be detrimental to the hair. This can be presented as an opinion, but it is not derogatory of all hair oils that are less expensive than the plaintiff’s,” the court said.
Regarding the distribution of the contested WhatsApp advertising, the court stated: “Though the WhatsApp message/Advertisement demonstrates that the contested Print Advertisement is targeted at the plaintiff, the ordinary consumer would not have the same perception.” Only those who got the WhatsApp advertisement/message in addition to the print advertisement will be able to make the connection among the two.
“PRIME LEGAL is a full-service law firm that has won a National Award and has more than 20 years of experience in an array of sectors and practice areas. Prime legal fall into a category of best law firm, best lawyer, best family lawyer, best divorce lawyer, best divorce law firm, best criminal lawyer, best criminal law firm, best consumer lawyer, best civil lawyer.”
Judgement- Click here to review the judgement
Written by- Anushka Satwani