Mangalam vs Patanjali, Hon’ble Bombay High Court on Camphor Cone Product Dispute

Author: Adv. Kavita Srivastav Sharan
-Adv. Mittal Nor Patel

The case of Mangalam Organics vs. Patanjali Ayurved Limited[1], pertains to the trademark and copyright infringement by Patanjali of Mangalam’s unique camphor product having a unique cone shape non-woven fabric draped packaging/ trade dress.

On 30/08/2023, the Hon’ble High Court, Bombay granted ex-parte interim relief in favour of Mangalam Organics and restrained Patanjali from manufacturing and/or selling the infringing  Camphor Cone  products. The Hon’ble Court also appointed a Court Receiver to seize the infringing Camphor Cone products. The aforesaid order was brought to the knowledge of Patanjali on 28/09/2023.

Despite the Hon’ble Court’s order, Patanjali was still supplying the impugned products and the same were also made available for sale on their website. Mangalam, therefore filed and Application under Order XXXIX Rule 2A Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (Order 39 Rule 2A CPC, 1908) alleging wilful disobedience and breach of the Order dated 30/08/2023[2] passed by the Hon’ble Court. Mangalam filed Additional Affidavits dated 30/04/2023 and 13/03/2024 along with annexures evidencing manufacture as well as sales of “Patanjali Astha Kapoor Cone” at a Virar store. The Invoices were produced for the months of March and April along with its manufacturing date i.e. March 2024, thereby showing continues sale by Patanjali after the Order dated 30/08/2023.

On 26/06/2024, the Authorised Representative of Patanjali filed an Affidavit and apologized for alleged breach being unintentional and assured Hon’ble Court that immediate steps would be taken to stop sale of the infringing products. However, Mangalam alleged that Patanjali is in wilful breach of the said order and they are answerable for the same. Therefore, Hon’ble Court by order dated 21.06.2024[3] directed Patanjali to tender an unconditional apology by way of an Affidavit and directed the presence of the Director and Mr. Rajnish Mishra, the deponent of the said Affidavit in Reply. It also directed Patanjali to file Affidavit stating in detail sale of impugned Camphor Cone product after the said order dated 30/08/2023.

On the next date of hearing i.e on 08.07.2024, Patanjali tendered an Affidavit in Reply dated 02/06/2024 and admitted to the breach of Injunction Order dated 30/08/2022 passed by the Hon’ble Bombay High Court and tendered an unconditional and unqualified apology on behalf of Patanjali and gave an undertaking to abide the orders passed by the Hon’ble High Court at Bombay. In the said Affidavit, Patanjali admitted that there has been a cumulative supply of impugned Camphor Cone products worth Rs. 49,57,861/- to whole sellers/ distributors and authorised stores out of which stock value of Rs. 25,94,505/- is still lying with their whole sellers/distributors and authorised stores.

On the other hand, Mangalam tendered a Compilation of Document containing documents to show that the said infringing products are still available in the market and that there has been sale of the infringing products as recent as on 3rd July, 4th July and 8th July. The website of Patanjali also shows that the impugned products is being offered for sale on 08/07/2024 despite Hon’ble Court’s Order dated 30/08/2023 and 21/06/2024. Mangalam contended that Patanjali did not disclose sale of the impugned Camphor products after 24/06/2024 thereby misrepresenting Hon’ble Court that the cumulative supply of impugned Camphor product is only amounting to Rs. 49,67,861/- post order dated 30.08.2023  and infact there has been supplies far in excess of this amount. Mangalam strongly pointed out to Hon’ble Court that there has been a persistent breach of the order passed by this Hon’ble Court.

Considering the admission of the Patanjali to the breach of the injunction order committed by them, Hon’ble Court held that Patanjali would necessarily have to purge the contempt of the injunction order, more so since the impugned products were still supplied as recent as on 08/07/2024. The Hon’ble Court stressed that such persistent breach of the injunction order by the Patanjali cannot be tolerated by Hon’ble Court and that it would be appropriate to direct them to deposit a sum of Rs.50,00,000/- (Rupees Fifty Lakhs Only) prior to passing of the order for contempt/ breach of the injunction order passed by Hon’ble Court.
Hon’ble Court thereafter has posted the matter on 19.07.2024 and continued the ad- interim relief granted earlier to Mangalam.

[1] Hon’ble Bombay High Court, Comm IPR Suit (L) No. 21853 of 2023
[2] Hon’ble Bombay High Court, Interim Application (L )No.2226 of 2023
[3] Hon’ble Bombay High Court, Interim Application (L )No. 4586 of 2024

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