Oct 20

RKD NewsNet October 2020 - Volume II

From the desk of Dr. Mohan Dewan | Assisted by: Adv. Aboli Kherde, Adv. Sachi Kapoor & Adv. Shubham Borkar

General News

  • Fear 3.0: Fear and Creativity
  • CAROTAR, 2020: Declaration of Country of Origin of imported goods
  • International News

    Fear 3.0: Fear and Creativity

    -Dr. Mohan Dewan

    I have written about Fear in the Times of Pandemic before. These articles can be accessed here and here. This is the third part in the series.

    Humans feel and suggest that fear and creativity are their exclusive domains. Humans suggest that no other entities can exhibit these emotions. I don't agree. All living and non-living entities exhibit fear. But yes, creativity and fear are both emotional responses. It has often been said that ‘necessity is the mother of all invention’. I beg to differ. Fear is its parent. Sometimes an abusive parent.

    Another cliché is that fear elicits a fight or flight response. Yet another- Fear can generate complete paralysis, absolute non doing! Total freeze! All systems, internal and external stop functioning, or are made to stop functioning! This total stoppage of all bodily functions is a common response to fear. This response is caused by the self-doubts generated in the memory storage unit of the body component.

    It has been suggested by the brain people that the emotional response to fear is generated in the Amygdala region of the human brain. I believe that the spirit has much to do with this also. Generations of humans have been conditioned to respond to triggers that evoke a response to fear. It takes immense courage to fight or fly away from fear. That is, to take some action. Fear was designed in primitive times to stop an entity from doing something dangerous. However, fear itself has evolved, so that it now attempts to prevent anything from being done effectively or creatively.

    Fear is sometimes a simple response to Change! Every entity, living or non-living exhibits this response. If the entity overcomes change, particularly a life threatening change in the case of a living entity, we say that the living entity adapts. If it does not, we say it perishes. Sooner or later one member of a species learns to adapt and a new generation, that is less resistant to the change that had induced the fear, evolves. Such a response requires courage. To stand up to the general reaction of all around you. To sometimes even suggest quite the opposite. To stand by your convictions, even at the cost of ridicule, derision and even death. It takes courage to suggest that the world is a globe and not flat and that planet earth is not the centre of the universe. That is the genesis of creativity. Even today we still say that the sun rises in the East! We still resist change although we know we are not being scientific.

    As entities in this universe, our sole function is to enable the spirit to evolve. To provide the spirit with our unique set of experiences, emotions, and feelings. Creativity is the way we satisfy our role as co-creators for this evolution.

    The virus or microbe that mutates in response to an antibiotic so that it is resistant to it, is exhibiting the same kind of creativity in response to fear, as a scientist who invents a cocktail to "fight" HIV or discovers a yet unknown element, a painter who creates an exquisite portrait, a poet who pens a sonnet, the author who types out her epic, a plant that branches out so that at least a portion of some of its leaves are able to absorb sunlight, an earthworm that coils itself in the face of danger or a chameleon that changes the colour of its skin to thwart its attacker. Each one of them have overcome the fear of their assumed worthlessness, their fear of rejection, their fear of ridicule to co–create with the spirit and thereby enable the spirit to evolve.

    The law of physics suggests that every action has an equal and opposite reaction. The law of fear suggests that for every action there is an equal and opposite inaction until courage is able to overcome it.

    Fear, in fact, preceded creativity. It is a natural and powerful primal emotion. Fear induces immediate biochemical changes in the body components and sends signals to the spirit, the "I", the mind, that the body perceives real or imaginary danger or threat to the body.

    The first reaction to any change is fear. Any form of change sends fear signals to the mind. Speaking of humans, in the beginning, humans were fearful of everything: the weather, the wild animals, the hostile environment, and each other. This vestigial fear persists even to this day.

    Although the physical response to fear is biochemical: sweating particularly in the palms, increased pulse rate, and a rush of adrenaline, the emotional responses are very personal. Every entity responds to fear in its own way. Depending on the combination of the past, feelings, sensations, and experiences of the body component and the generations of fear embedded in the spirit. Generation after generation humans evolved so that with the help of creativity, they would be able to adapt themselves to each of the conditions that caused the fear. But the fear department persists as strong as ever. Every creative thought or proposed action is audited by self-doubt: am I worthy of action? In fact, to be fearful is to be human.

    There are also some humans for whom fear is a pleasurable experience. Not so much fear itself but the adrenaline rush that it gives in the body component. Scary movies and roller coaster rides are designed to provide such rushes. But to most fear is an unwanted emotion along with its cousin...worry!

    In the next part of this work, we will discuss ways to adapt to fear and opt for creativity.

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    CAROTAR, 2020: Declaration of Country of Origin of imported goods

    The Customs (Administration of Rules of Origin under Trade Agreements) Rules, 2020 (“the Rules”), notified on 21st August, 2020, came into force from 21st September, 2020. A 30 day period was given to importers and other stakeholders to familiarize themselves with new provisions1. The Rules are primarily intended to prevent undue claims of benefits under Foreign Trade Agreements and consequently protect the domestic industries in India. The requirements prescribed under the Rules are clearly in furtherance of the ‘Go Vocal For Local’ campaign initiated by the Government of India to stabilise the domestic economy. The Finance Minister of India reportedly said, “Undue claims of FTA benefits have posed threat to domestic industry. Such imports require stringent checks. In this context, suitable provisions are being incorporated in the Customs Act, 1962.”

    The Customs Act, 1962 provides for procedures to be followed by importers for claiming a preferential rate of (customs) duty sanctioned under Foreign Trade Agreements. The Rules define “Preferential rate of duty” as the rate at which customs duty is charged in accordance with the trade agreement between India and another country.

    As per Rule 3 of the Rules, to claim a preferential rate of duty under a trade agreement, the importer has to mention certain information while filing Bills of Entry. This includes, the tariff notification against each product on which the preferential rate of duty is claimed, prescribed details (such as reference number, date of issuance, originating criteria) and copies of certificate of origin of each such item, details of production procedure adopted for the goods being imported. It must, inter alia, also indicate if the goods have been transported directly from country of origin or not. The importer is also required to obtain and store information as prescribed in FORM 1 of the Rules. This is to show the manner in which country of origin criteria, including the regional value content, and product specific criteria, specified in the Rules of Origin, are satisfied. It is to be submitted to the proper officer on request.


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    Centripetal sends Cisco for a spin

    -Ashima Sobti

    The District Judge of the Eastern District of Virginia (Norfolk), U.S.A, passed a judgment after a month-long trial over video conference. The ruling was passed on 5th October, 2020 in Centripetal Networks Inc. v. Cisco Systems Inc.2 , that Cisco engaged in "wilful and egregious" infringement of four patents held by Centripetal.

    Funnily enough, the actual damages suffered by Centripetal is $755.81 million, but because the infringement was “wilful and egregious,” it was enhanced by a factor of 2.5x. This brings the amount to $1.89 billion. Adding another $13.72 million in pre-judgment interest, Cisco now owes Centripetal a total of $1.9 billion.

    It doesn’t stop there. Cisco has to pay a royalty to Centripetal on some of its products. Cisco has to pay a 10% royalty for the next three years and then a 5% royalty for three years after that.

    “With this judgment, the court rejected the primitive doctrine that might makes right…” said Centripetal’s attorney Paul Andre. “This is a significant win for all small, innovative companies.”, he added.

    Paul Andre put some strong opening arguments during the trial. He said that their sales had been doubling each year from 2015 until it met with Cisco for a partnership. Both companies “got close to getting married but got left at the altar,”. He further added that Centripetal told Cisco about its inventions in 2016 and “Cisco kept coming back and asking for more.”

    However, Reuters reported that Cisco was unhappy with the ruling. Cisco’s spokeswoman Robyn Blum said, "We are disappointed with the trial court’s decision given the substantial evidence of non-infringement, invalidity and that Cisco’s innovations predate the patents by many years… We look forward to the Federal Court’s review on appeal.”


    1. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-10-05/cisco-must-pay-1-9-billion-in-patent-trial-on-network-feature

    2. https://www.bizjournals.com/sanjose/news/2020/10/05/cisco-patent-judgment-centripetal.html

    3. https://www.crn.com/news/networking/cisco-ordered-to-pay-1-9-billion-in-patent-infringement-suit

    2 18-94, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia (Norfolk)

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    Did you trademark your store layout yet?

    -Sumeet Sirohi

    The term “trademark” also includes non-conventional trademarks such as sound marks, smell marks, 3D marks, colour marks, etc. Primarily, trademarks have to be capable of distinguishing the goods or services of one proprietor from another. The newest addition to the family of non-conventional trademarks is the “store layout trademark”. It is the layout of a store/ retail outlet of a proprietor where goods or services are provided to customers. It may include the unique placement of furniture, lightings, wall shapes, designs, colour schemes, and the like.

    The Taj Mahal Palace hotel, Mumbai and the Bombay Stock Exchange, Mumbai, have obtained trademark registrations for the architectural designs of their entire structures, so as to prohibit other entities from misusing the images of their structures without authorisation. However, similar protection needs to be granted for the unique interiors of shops/ outlets also. The need for the trademark registrations of a store layout arose, especially for shops situated inside malls or shopping complexes. A consumer must associate the store layout exclusively with its parent brand. For example, without looking at the board/ label outside a store, one can guess at most times, if he/she is in a McDonald’s outlet or a Natural Ice Cream outlet. Although there is no judicial precedent in India for registration of store layouts as trademarks as of now, heavy reliance can be placed on the case3 at the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) allowing the registration of Apple’s store layout as a 3 dimensional trademark. The CJEU had observed that the store layout had features that were unique to Apple stores. The CJEU also stated that since the store layout design was unique and distinguishable, the goods and services provided therein could be solely associated with Apple Inc.

    Store layout trademarks can be filed as 3D trademarks in India, as filing them as device marks would only provide protection to the 2D design. However, it is important to clearly represent the store layout trademark in accordance with the Ralf Siekman standards for non-conventional trademarks. It has been observed that most of the store layout trademarks have been objected under Section 9 (1) (a) of the Trade Marks Act for lack of distinctive character. These can be overcome by explaining the unique features of a store and its association with the goods and services provided by the proprietor.

    The inclusion of the store layout designs as trademarks in India will protect the interests of many proprietors who spend a considerable amount of money in building unique store designs and will also prohibit passing off of the store layout designs in many cases.

    3Apple Inc. v Deutsches Patent-und Markenamt(C 421/13)

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    Has the Mountain lost its Dew?

    After 15 long years of a legal battle, PepsiCo lost the first round for exclusivity for the trademark MOUNTAIN DEW with respect to packaged drinking water (PDW). The fight was against one Magfast Beverages (Magfast) of Hyderabad. The arena of the battle was the southern city of Hyderabad.

    We do not claim any copyright in the image used. It has been used for academic and representational purposes only

    Magfast and PepsiCo filed suits against each other. Each claimed to be the proprietor of the mark MOUNTAIN DEW and sought injunctive relief against the other.

    Initially, PepsiCo filed a suit for trademark infringement at the Delhi High Court. This suit was transferred to the City Civil Court of Hyderabad on the grounds of jurisdiction. Thereafter, Magfast filed a counter infringement suit against PepsiCo before the same court.

    The trial in both suits ran concurrently for 15 long years and judgments were issued only recently. The judgments offer a good and detailed insight into the issues of prior use, trans-border reputation, and the difference between the rights obtained via registration and those obtained via use.

    PepsiCo pleaded that it had adopted the mark Mountain Dew in the US in 1940. It sells packaged drinking water under the mark Aquafina. PepsiCo obtained registration for the mark Mountain Dew in respect of soft drink beverages and syrups and concentrates in India in 1985. Notably, packaged drinking water was not included in the specification of goods and the application was made on a proposed to be used basis.

    Magfast’s case was that it launched PDW under the mark Mountain Dew in the year 2000. Although it had applied for registration of the trademark Mountain Dew for PDW in the year 2003, it appears that the opposition is still pending.

    In its suit against Magfast, PepsiCo alleged infringement of the trademark Mountain Dew and violation of trade dress: claiming that the label adopted by Magfast for its product resembled the label of Aquafina. PepsiCo further pleaded that PDW and soft-drinks were both products in the same class, that is, class 32.

    PepsiCo also pleaded that use of the mark by Magfast, was likely to cause confusion amongst members of the public. Notably, no evidence of confusion was led in the case by PepsiCo. PepsiCo relied on its newspaper publicity of the mark Mountain Dew in several countries outside India.

    Magfast’s case was that it had established use from the year 2000, and that prior to 2003 PepsiCo had not even advertised its products under the mark Mountain Dew in India. Magfast also pleaded that the two labels and bottle designs and other features of the products were very different. There was no reason to apprehend that there could be any possible confusion between the two products in the minds of the consumers.

    It pleaded that PepsiCo had not adopted the mark itself, but purchased the mark from Hartman Beverages in 1964. Significantly, in the mark assigned to PepsiCo, the erstwhile owner of the mark, Hartman Beverages had disclaimed any exclusive rights to the use of the term “Mountain Dew”.

    After sifting through all the evidence and hearing the pleas of both the parties, the District Judge at Hyderabad came to the following conclusions:

    1. Since PepsiCo had itself bought the trademark from Hartman Beverages, and Hartman had disclaimed any exclusive right to the use of the words Mountain Dew, PepsiCo could not have had a better right than Hartman Beverages.

    2. The packaging of the 2 products, the colour schemes, the features of the 2 products, were substantially different and one product could not be confused for the other.

    3. Since Magfast had established use of the mark since the year 2000, the Judge mentally transported himself to the year 2000, when digital media was not easily accessible. PepsiCo was not able to establish that the publications in which PepsiCo had advertised the mark in 1995, 1989, and 1997 had any circulation in Hyderabad. All other evidence that PepsiCo was able to establish was from the year 2004, and therefore clearly, PepsiCo had not established any trans-border reputation or use or fame in the year 2000, when Magfast had started using the same.

    4. Based on the peculiar facts of this case, PepsiCo was not able to persuade the judge that Magfast was at fault, in adopting and using the mark Mountain Dew in the year 2000. At the same time, Magfast was certainly not able to persuade the judge that PepsiCo had infringed or violated the mark by launching its product in the year 2004.

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    Aaj Tak gets dynamic injunction against rogue websites “till today” and also for tomorrow!

    Living Media India Limited (Living Media) is the registered proprietor of the trademarks, inter alia, “AAJ TAK”, ,with respect to telecommunications and news broadcasting. Living Media found that certain websites such as www.news-aajtak.co.in, www.aajtaknewsdaily.com, www.newsaajtaklive.com, and www.aajtakreport.com were using its registered trademarks as part of their websites/ domain names . Living Media approached the Delhi High Court: Living Media India Limited v. www.News-Aajtak.co.in & ORS. CS(COMM)No.395/2020, seeking an injunction restraining these rogue websites from infringing its trademarks. The respective domain names registrars (DNRs) were also made parties to the suit.

    The Court held that Living Media has established a prima facie case in its favour. The balance of convenience also appears to be in its favour, given the fact that it has used the aforesaid trademarks extensively for its services of news broadcasting. Therefore, the continued use of Living Media’s trademarks by these rogue websites will irreparably impact Living Media’s reputation and goodwill.

    Hence, the Court directed the respective DNRs to block/suspend the websites/domain names of the rogue websites. Furthermore, these websites were also directed to take down uploads made on various social media platforms administered by them, in case they include infringing material and/or trademarks that are deceptively similar to those of Living Media.

    Living Media further contended that various rogue websites keep emerging, resulting in disruption of its business and infringement of its rights. It requested the Court for a leave to approach the Court, with an appropriate application, seeking similar orders against such websites. The Court granted this liberty and held that as and when such an application is moved, appropriate orders will be passed by the Court.

    Source- https://www.biswajitsarkar.com/blog/uncategorized/hc-restrains-magazine-using-aaj-tak-trademark.html

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    Drama in the Trademark World!

    In India, drama is not only restricted to daily soaps. The hot gossip from the trademark world is that Sony’s popular mark and brand ‘PS5’ is already applied for by an entity in India!

    The ‘PlayStation’ (PS) consoles by Sony Interactive Entertainment Inc. are always one of the most awaited gaming consoles for players from all age groups. Sony intended to launch its ‘PS5’ console in India. Around January, 2020, Sony thought it best to secure a trademark registration for ‘PS5’ (just like every brand would) in India. However, to its surprise, it found that about 3 months earlier i.e. on October 29, 2019, a person named ‘Hitesh Aswani’ has filed a wordmark ‘PS5’ bearing no. 4332863 in Class 28 on ‘proposed to be used’ basis. As per the NICE Classification, Class 28 covers ‘gaming consoles.’ The application is currently ‘opposed’ by Sony. The Japanese company has also filed 2 applications, one for the wordmark ‘PS5’ and the other for the device ‘ ’. Sony’s application for the wordmark stands ‘opposed’ by Mr. Aswani, whereas the device mark stands ‘objected’ by the Registry as on date.

    Sony is also the proprietor of the marks: ‘PS’ (since 1996), ‘PS2’(since 1999), ‘PS3’ (since 2005), ‘PS4’ (since 2013), ‘PSP’ (since 2003), and several other marks in Class 28.

    Additionally, Sony had filed a Madrid Application claiming priority from its application in Jamaica filed on October 3, 2019 i.e. before Mr. Aswani’s application on October 29, 2019. Ergo, in addition to being the proprietor of the marks: ‘PS’ and ‘PS2’, ‘PS3’, etc. Sony is also the prior adopter and proprietor of the mark ‘PS5’ and .

    It is predicted that it is only a matter of time before Sony secures its marks’ registrations in India.

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    Conversations with Dr. Mohan Dewan

    (Shubham enters Dr. Mohan Dewan's chamber)

    Shubham: Sir, I recently read about Trademark Caution Notices. I had certain questions about them.

    Dr. Dewan: Go Ahead….

    Shubham: Sir, first things first, what is a Trademark Caution Notice?

    Dr. Dewan: A Trademark Caution Notice is a common method of notifying to the general public that a mark is registered and that the client is the owner of the mark. It is intimation to all in rem that the mark is registered and statutory rights have accrued in favour of the client.

    Shubham: Sir, to whom is this notice sent?

    Dr. Dewan: The notice is generally published in newspapers digitally or physically. It is a notice in general and not addressed to a particular person. Hence it does not give rise to any counter proceedings of groundless threats. It is addressed to all persons: competitors, traders, consumers and members of the general public.

    Shubham: Sir, are these notices accepted as evidence in the Courts in India?

    Dr. Dewan: Yes of course. All Courts in India have accepted these as evidence in support of the trademark owner. A person who may be using the same or a similar mark in future cannot plead ignorance of the mark and its registration. This defence is not available to such a person. It therefore becomes an effective piece of evidence in litigation.

    Shubham: But Sir, what is the need for a newspaper/ print publication when a digital publication is easier and less expensive?

    Dr. Dewan: Yes, you are right Shubham, print publication is definitely more expensive than digital publication but here we can be selective. The publication can be in a trade magazine and not necessarily in a general newspaper. Such trade magazines are generally less expensive and are circulated to a target audience. Further print publication is always dated, every magazine or a newspaper bears a date, such a date is important during litigation. Publications in the digital media are not so easily accepted in Courts. For establishing a notice published in the digital media an affidavit under 65 B of the Evidence Act has to be published with details of how the evidence was seen and downloaded using a particular machine and printed on a particular printer. This can become tedious for the trademark owner. Also digital evidence of use needs to be proven by date, time, and certificates of "eyeballs". The trademark owner will have to prove this by the number of people who had an Indian IP address and who viewed the website on which the notice was published. So, you see, it is more difficult to establish evidence of use when such advertisement is in the digital form.

    Whereas a notice in a newspaper/ print publication generally mentions the date of publication and this date itself is sufficient for posterity and nothing needs to be proven as the document speaks for itself.

    Shubham: Okay, I got your point Sir, but why do we ask a client to release such a Trademark Caution Notice? I mean is it for proving use of the mark or is it a defence against future infringement or opposition actions?

    Dr. Dewan: Shubham, a caution notice is a valuable tool in an infringement action and is not just meant for proving use of the trademark unlike as in the US, there is no requirement in India, to prove that the mark was in use at the time of renewal.

    However, a need for proving use of the mark may arise if an "interested" party applies for the cancellation of the mark on the ground of non-use.

    Also, such caution notices are useful in case of future oppositions or infringements of the mark in India. Such a notice has also been recognized in opposition proceedings where the client wants to oppose a mark. It becomes unchallengeable evidence.

    Shubham: If Trademark Caution Notices are so useful, why don’t we hear about them more often?

    Dr. Dewan: Shubham, it may be because other Indian law firms that you may work with may not be so informed about this aspect and there is not much scope to earn legal fees in drafting a caution notice. We routinely inform all our clients of the availability of such a potential weapon in infringement and opposition proceedings. The co-ordination of publication does require considerable monitoring from our side and it is more in the nature of our social responsibility to the client rather than a matter of earning fees. It is of course upon the client to voluntarily accept this recommendation or not.

    Shubham: Sir, which businesses do you feel are at high risk, if they don’t publish a Trademark Caution Notice?

    Dr. Dewan: Shubham, the business risk will depend upon the kind of business that a client has in India. If the business is minimum and the client does not expect any infringement in the future under this mark, the risk is minimum. However, if the client has significant potential for business in India and there is a possibility of some competitor or other person using the trademark then not publishing a notice may cause a business risk.

    Shubham: Sir, why are Trademark Caution Notices more important, when it comes to infringement and violation in India?

    Dr. Dewan: This is because the ground reality in India with respect to potential infringement or violation of a trademark is different from that in other countries like the US.

    The digital media in India has not proliferated as much as in the US. Even the mindset of Judges and Trademark Examiners is more physical than digital. Therefore, psychologically, a physical notice has a greater impact than a digital one. I have often seen in litigation whether before the Trademark Authority or before the Court that the defendant pleads ignorance particularly in trans-border cases. The hearing authority does get carried away by the defense of ignorance of the trademark. Although recently, there has been a greater acceptance of digital use of the mark.

    Shubham: But Sir, is not registration of the mark itself a prima facie proof of its validity in India?

    Dr. Dewan: Yes, you are correct Shubham, once the mark is registered, a future infringer cannot plead ignorance because the mark is present on the Indian Trade Marks Register. Therefore, statutory infringement has taken place irrespective of the use of the mark by the client or knowledge of the infringer of such mark.

    However, this becomes an issue at the end of the trial and not at the time of requesting discretionary relief such as a grant of an interim injunction or an award for penal damages. A notice becomes useful in these circumstances.

    If there is an infringement, the client can still obtain an injunction of the third party’s infringing activity. But I cannot say the same for a prayer for an interim injunction or an ex-parte injunction at the initial stage in the absence of any concrete documentary evidence. The award of damages is of course very subjective.

    Shubham: Sir my last question, what exact purpose does a Trademark Caution Notice serve?

    Dr. Dewan: Shubham, it communicates a subliminal message to the hearing authority that the client is very vigilant and diligent in protecting its mark and has taken the effort to communicate the knowledge of its trademark and its registration to the general public in India.

    Shubham: Sir, that leads me to another question, and this would certainly be the last. Does a proprietor need to publish a Trademark Caution Notice only once or several times?

    Dr. Dewan: Shubham, this again depends on the business of a client. If the business significant and potentially growing, we not only recommend a caution notice immediately after registration but also periodically and in different publications to take advantage of greater coverage.

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    Hidden Meanings in Trademarks

    Ever noted the Evernote mark?!

    With a population that relies more on notes, scribbles, drafts, messages and chat-searches, someone had to make an Evernote. It is a web application that allows readers to make notes and capture photos of important things, that can be easily saved. Interestingly, the logo of Evernote has an elephant. Guess why? We looked it up and found that the reason for this is that elephants have a very sharp memory. They can remember friends, enemies, paths, locations of water bodies for a really long time.

    Upon looking closely, one might wonder if the triangular ear of the elephant is inspired by the common symbol of a floppy disk?! We are not giving you an image of a floppy disk, because we want you to remember it in your mind’s eye!

    Like we always say, you cannot unsee it!

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    Know the real India

    -Adv. Chinmay Pawar

    During invasions from the north-western borders in the middle ages, the southern part of India remained relatively secured and free from invasions by Islamic rulers. Therefore, in this part of the Indian subcontinent the culture, buildings both religious and non-religious, religious texts and other documents remained mostly intact. The kingdoms and empires from this part of the world left their unforgettable and distinctive mark on the Indian culture.

    Typically, the Indian peninsula i.e. land below river Narmada was considered as southern India in ancient times.


    We do not claim any copyright in the image used or accuracy of the political boundaries. It has been used for academic and representational purposes only.

    One of the most important kingdoms from southern India was the kingdom of Chalukyas. At the epitome of its power, the Chalukya kingdom covered almost all of the Indian peninsula with its capital at Vatapi i.e. modern day Badami in the state of Karnataka.

    Chalukya’s power reached its zenith during the reign of Pulakeshin II, a contemporary of Harsha of the Vardhana dynasty in north India. During the early years of his reign he fought several civil wars and successfully re-established his control over the kingdom. Thereafter, he led campaigns against southern kingdoms of Kadambas, Alupas and Gangas. In the north, he defeated the Latas, Malavas, and Gurjaras. Pulakeshin’s final triumph in the north was the victory over Harsha of Kannauj. After his great victory over Harsha, Pulakeshin assumed the title of ‘Dakshinapathesvara’ (Lord of the South). Pulaskeshin II controlled both the coasts of India thus, benefited from the trade with Europe- west Asia and southeast Asia at the same time. Many trade routes within India and sea routes connecting Europe through west Asia and southeast Asia largely contributed to the prosperity of his kingdom. It is believed that he maintained good diplomatic relations with Khusrow II of Iranian Empire and both the kings sent envoys to each other’s courts.

    Xuanzang, a Chinese Buddhist monk, scholar, traveler, and translator visited Chalukya kingdom during Pulakeshin’s reign. His accounts describe Pulakeshin II’s love for war and ‘martial arts’. According to him, Pulakeshin II was a benevolent ruler and his subjects reciprocated his affection for them by showing absolute loyalty to him.

    He was a great admirer of arts, literature and poetry like most of his contemporaries. Pulakeshin II enjoyed the company of three renowned poets Adikavi (pre-eminent- poet) Pampa, Sri Ponna and Ranna.

    However, his frequent and extended battles with Pallava kings ultimately proved fatal to the Chalukya kingdom and its supremacy over south India.

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    Hidden gems of India – Blue Flag Beaches

    -Adv. Chinmay Pawar

    We may recall that on the eve of International Coastal Clean-Up Day, Union Environment Ministry of India announced its decision to recommend eight Indian beaches for the coveted ‘Blue Flag’ International eco-label.

    On October 11, 2020, the Union Minister for Environment Ministry, Mr. Prakash Javdekar announced that eight beaches in India have been awarded the ‘Blue Flag’ certification. As per Union Minister’s statement, no country has been awarded ‘Blue Flag’ tags for eight beaches in a single attempt. The jury also awarded India a ‘third prize’ under ‘international best practices’ for control of pollution in coastal regions.

    The awardees of ‘Blue Flag’ tag are selected by an eminent international jury, comprising members of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) and International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

    The ‘Blue Flag’ programme was started in France in the year 1985. The programme promotes sustainable development in freshwater and marine areas. The program was expanded in 2001 to include geographical areas outside Europe.

    The awardees are: Kappad (Kerala), Shivrajpur (Gujarat), Ghoghla (Diu), Kasarkod and Padubidri (Karnataka), Rushikonda (Andhra Pradesh), Golden (Odisha) and Radhanagar (Andaman & Nicobar Islands). Watch this space for more updates on each of the beaches!

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