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Additional Documents and Conflict between IPD Rules 2022 and Commercial Court Act 2015

This legal article delves into the recent decision by the Hon'ble High Court of Delhi regarding the taking on record the additional documents in trademark cancellation petitions before the Commercial Court sitting in IP Division. The conflict arises between the provisions of the Commercial Court Act 2015 and the IPD Rules 2022, as the court determines the entitlement to file additional documents in such cases.

The focal point of the dispute revolves around the invocation of Order XI Rule 1(10)2 of the CPC by the Registered Proprietor in a trademark cancellation petition. The petitioner contests this move, asserting that the application is improperly framed under Section 57 of the Trade Marks Act and should adhere to Rule 7 of the IPD Rules 2022.

The Petitioner's Stand:
The petitioner's resistance is multi-faceted. Firstly, they argue that Rule 7(ii) mandates the filing of all documents with pleadings, which was asking to Rule 2(i)4 in Chapter VII of the Delhi High Court (Original Side) Rules, 2018. Secondly, they assert the absence of a provision in IPD Rules akin to Order XI Rule 1(10) of the CPC, which enables the filing of additional documents post-Written Statement. Thirdly, they contend that Rule 7(xiii) of the IPD Rules does not permit the incorporation of provisions from the CPC or the Commercial Courts Act that are inconsistent with the IPD Rules.

The High Court's Rationale:
The Hon'ble High Court, in rejecting the petitioner's arguments, relies on the pivotal Rule 7(xiii) of the IPD Rules. The court emphasizes that this rule explicitly extends the applicability of the Commercial Courts Act, 2015, to original petitions, including rectification petitions under Section 57 of the Trade Marks Act. Consequently, the court asserts that allowing additional documents aligns seamlessly with the IPD Rules, and such inclusion does not contradict any provisions therein.

Analysis and Implications:
This decision underscores the dynamic interplay between procedural rules and legislative enactments. The court's reliance on Rule 7(xiii) to bridge the gap between the IPD Rules and the Commercial Courts Act sets a precedent for harmonizing procedural frameworks in complex legal scenarios.

The Concluding Note:
In resolving the conflict between the IPD Rules 2022 and the Commercial Court Act 2015, the Hon'ble High Court of Delhi provides clarity on the admissibility of additional documents in trademark cancellation petitions.

The Case Law Discussed:
Case Title: Bennett, Coleman and Company Vs E Entertainment Television LLC
Date of Judgement/Order:16/11/2023
Case No. C.O. (COMM.IPD-TM) 86/2022
Neutral Citation No: 2023:DHC:8274
Name of Hon'ble Court: Delhi High Court
Name of Hon'ble Judge C Harishankar, HJ

Information and discussion contained herein is being shared in the public Interest. The same should not be treated as substitute for expert advice as it is subject to my subjectivity and may contain human errors in perception, interpretation and presentation of the fact and issue involved herein.

Written By: Md.Imran Wahab, IPS, IGP, Provisioning, West Bengal
Email: [email protected], Ph no: 9836576565

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