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Bombay HC Restrains SEBAMED From Broadcasting Ads Disparaging HUL Soaps

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Bombay High Court Law Insider

Debangana Ray

Published on June 17, 2022 at 18:45 IST

The Bombay HC provided great relief to Hindustan Unilever Ltd. And Wipro Enterprises Pvt Ltd., permanently restrained USV Pvt Ltd., the owner of SEBAMED soap Brand, from broadcasting advertisements that ridculed the soap brands, LUX, DOVE and PEARS owned by HUL.

The Single judge bench comprising of Justice AK Menon, directed USV to destroy all the copies of the advertisements that have been used so far and restrained them from published further such degrading material.

The counsel for the USV sought a stay on the order. However, the Counsel for Hindustan Unilever and Wipro vehemently opposed the stay.

Advocate Hiren Kamod for the HUL requested the court to give USV time to destroy the derogatory material.

Justice Menon, however, stated that the USV must be given an opportunity to challenge the order before the appellate forum and allowed the prayer to stay.

The HUL was aggrieved with three visual advertisements with respect to USV’s SEBAMED cleansing bar.

The advertisements disparaged LUX, DOVE and PEARS soap bars and alleged that these soaps were similar to RIN detergent soaps also belonging to HUL due to the pH levels of the products.

HUL argued that USV Infringed its trademarks by using the marks on RIN, LUX, DOVE and PEARS.

Though the HC had temporarily restrained USV from using disparaging advertisements. However, it later allowed USV to use the amended advertisements without the derogatory references.