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Kerala wins trademark battle for KSRTC as Karnataka loses case

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Thiruvananthapuram, Bengaluru, June 03: After years of battling it legally, the Kerala Road Transport Corporation has got the legal right to its trademarks, acronym KSRTC.

The Controller General of Patents Design and Trade Marks under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry approved Kerala's claim. This would make Kerala RTC the sole custodian of the trademarks and all buses of the corporation will display KSRTC with the mark to indicate the registration (R).

Kerala wins trademark battle for KSRTC as Karnataka loses case

The Kerala RTC and the Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation were locked in a legal battle over the acronym KSRTC for the past 7 years. The buses and websites of both the Road Transport Corporations were using KSRTC.

The legal battle began when Karnataka made a move for the trademark registration in 2014. A legal notice from the Karnataka Road Transport Corporation made Kerala speed up proceedings to get custody of the trademark properties.

KSRTC CMD said that only they have the right to use the acronym KSRTC. We will send a legal notice to Karnataka, CMD Biju Prabhakar said. We have followed the registration application closely in the last one year and have presented pictures and other evidence to prove that we started ahead of Karnataka.

Karnataka and Kerala RTCs have never competed with each other and even if Karnataka RTC continues to use KSRTC, there will be no harm done to Kerala RTC. In a federal system, states need to cooperate and resolve differences. Neither state should make this a prestige issue, Karnataka Transport Minister Laxman Savadi said. He however added that they would explore all legal options.

The Kerala State Road Transport Corporation is one of the oldest operated and managed public transport utilities in the country. The Travancore State Transport Department was reestablished as Kerala State Road Transport Corporation on April 1 1965.

Karnataka started as the Mysore Government Road Transport Department and became Karnataka Transport Corporation in 1973.

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