The 12th International Consumer Law Conference Blog

Organised by NALSAR and the International Association for Consumer Law

25th February, 2009: Architecture of Consumer Protection in a Global Economy

Participant: Manasa J. & Chaitanya B., NALSAR (India), Trademark Violations and Consumer Interests and Analysis. 

In order to determine the Consumer Interest there is a need to harmonize the consumer law that protects the interest of the consumer and the Trademarks law that protects the interest of the procedures. Trademarks in its long run gained importance for both producers and the consumers. A consumer is one who purchases goods and services from the market which is the producer. According to Ralph Nader a consumer should be defined as a citizen as each and every citizen in the society is in some way or the other every one is a consumer.

 

A transaction between a consumer and a producer on breach will call for both Criminal as well as Civil Liability depending on the kind of the fraud committed by the parties. A brand is based on the name of the logo, name and basically for a product. Trademark is based on Intellectual Property Rights.

 

The main scope of the paper was be to look into the consumer related issues with special emphasis on Trademarks and to examine the pros and cons connected with protecting consumer interest in trademark violations. This was dealt with reference in to India.

 

Every transaction has an economic perspective. In this we see how not only the owner is at the losing end but also the consumer is. The loss borne by the producer is taken care of by the market but the loss borne by the consumer is not given any consideration and is not looked into. The consumer is stuck between a group of trade marks and brand names from where he does not know how to escape.

 

When the rights of a consumer is breached he is either to ignorant to sue and does not know of his rights, either does not have enough money to pay for a suit to be filed. Moreover Section 29® of the Consumer Protection Act does not lay down on what basis is a consumers right breached. It completely depends on the judge and his discretion. Therefore it is generally very difficult for the consumers to prove that the producer has cheated them. Consumer Protection Act is supposed to be the umbrella legislation even though it does not incorporate the rights of the consumers in a direct manner and it does not look into the matters in a detailed manner.

 

The consumers are highly affected due to the trademarks and the brand names. Especially by the trademark violation and the remedies that have a check on such violations.  The major infringement on the trademarks is the similarity in the trademark, Trade mark and branding. The question which should be answered mainly is that how are these products supposed to do things differently and create a different place for themselves. The main aim of the paper has been to show how the rights of the Consumer is not protected and trampled over by the Producers.

                                      Rapporteurs:

                                      -Ayushi Mittal, IInd Year, NALSAR University of Law,Hyderabad.

                                      – Ankita Gupta, Ist Year, NALSAR University of Law, Hyderabad.

 

 

 

 

 

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