• Dr. Mohan Dewan

 “Contempt be invoked where conduct of the

CrossFit, LLC (CrossFit) is a company based in California, USA, and engaged in providing products and services pertaining to health, fitness and nutrition in addition to conducting fitness seminars and providing trainer certifications. CrossFit adopted and used the mark ‘CROSSFIT’ since 1995 and has obtained various registrations for the word and device mark in India as well as other jurisdictions and has been using the said mark in respect of its products and services.

In September, 2020, CrossFit learned about the Gurugram-based gym “RTB Gym and Fitness Centre” operated by Mr. Arun Sharma using an identical mark ‘CROSSFIT’ in for identical services and prominently displaying the mark ‘CROSSFIT’ on its premises, literature, online pages in the form of hashtags since March, 2018.

CrossFit approached the Delhi High Court and claimed trademark infringement. Prior to filing of the suit, CrossFit also attempted pre-litigation mediation in August, 2021. However, the Mr. Sharma did not appear. A legal notice dated 29th September, 2020 was also issued by CrossFit, but the same was not replied to either.

When the matter was listed before the Court in October, 2021, The Court issued summons and notice and granted an ex-parte ad-interim injunction restraining Mr. Sharma from infringing the mark “CROSSFIT”. However, there was no appearance on behalf of Mr. Sharma therefore, the matter proceeded on ex-parte. CrossFit consequently filed an affidavit stating that despite the Court orders, Defendants continued to use the mark ‘CROSSFIT’.

The Court held that CrossFit had made out a case for the grant of permanent and mandatory injunction and imposed costs of Rs 10 lakhs on Mr. Sharma, to be paid within three months. Additionally, the Court, observed the conduct of Defendant as ‘contumacious’, and further held that such conduct constituted contempt of the injunction order October, 2021, and hence, appointed a Local Commissioner to visit the premises of Defendant and remove hoardings and any other billboards, signage, display material, brochures, packaging, and literature bearing the mark ‘CROSSFIT’.

The Court also gave CrossFit permission to ask internet directories and social media sites to remove the RTB Gym and Fitness Centre’s infringing listings and posts that displayed the mark “CROSSFIT” within 48 hours.

 It is pertinent to understand that contempt jurisdiction may be invoked in every case where the conduct of a contemnor is such as would interfere with the due course of justice. It questions the capability of such order being executed which concerns the parties inter-se. The power of the Court to invoke contempt jurisdiction, is not, in any way, altered by the rights of the parties.



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