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Times Group drops petition against Republic TV, Arnab

Bennett, Coleman and Company Limited
Photo Credit : IANS

New Delhi : The Bennett, Coleman and Company Limited has withdrawn from the Delhi High Court its petition seeking contempt of court proceedings against Republic TV and its Managing Director Arnab Goswami for allegedly violating a court order regarding the use of the ‘Nation Wants To Know’ tagline.

The plea was made in a lawsuit filed by Bennett Coleman, the parent company of Times Now news channel, claiming trademark infringement by Republic TV and Goswami. An interim order from October 23, 2020 had restrained Republic TV from using the tagline ‘News Hour’ or any similar mark for its debate shows. However, the court permitted Republic TV to use ‘Nation Wants To Know’ as part of its speech or news presentations.

Times Group subsequently filed a contempt petition, accusing Republic TV of violating the earlier order by using the tagline as a trademark and not maintaining accounts for its usage, as required. However, the Times Group’s counsel requested to withdraw the application, stating that they would explore alternate legal remedies.Justice C. Hari Shankar granted their request and disposed of the petition.

“Learned counsel for the plaintiff seeks leave to withdraw this application as he submits that he would take alternate remedies in law. The application is accordingly disposed of as withdrawn,” the court noted.Goswami had earlier argued that the tagline was used during his tenure at Times Now and claimed it was a “common speech” with no intellectual property protection. He maintained that the tagline was spontaneous and creative, and none of the submitted documents indicated its connection to any goods or services.

Times Group argued that the tagline was coined and developed by their editorial and marketing teams for use during discussions on the ‘News Hour’ programme.It was further countered by stating that Goswami was trying to take “undue advantage” of his past services at the Times Group, where he was privy to the company’s utmost confidential information during his tenure as its Editor-in-Chief.

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