MUMBAI: The most popular game on smartphones and tabs, the ‘Candy Crush Saga’, is embroiled in a court case in India. King.com, the company which owns intellectual property of the game, filed a copyright infringement suit against the Apeejay Surrendra Group in the Bombay high court recently to restrain it from using the images of its popular game.
The Candy Crush Saga has 97 million daily active users.
The high court, based on King’s ownership of the intellectual property rights for the Candy Crush game and the evidence of its popularity, had passed an ex-parte order, restraining Park Hotel from using the intellectual property.
“In its ex-parte order, the Bombay high court recognized that the intellectual property rights in the game are exclusively associated with King.com,” a lawyer from Khaitan & Co, the law firm which represented the Malta-based company, told TOI. An ex-parte order is passed without giving the opposite side any prior notice.
The Apeejay group did not respond to an email till the time of going to press.
King.com had come across online advertisements of a musical event named ‘Candy Crush’, which was planned to be held in the Apeejay Group-managed Park Hotel at Vishakhapatnam. The advertisements also copied the visual graphics of the ‘Candy Crush’ game, while its images were also used in the event promotion material.
As the details of the organizers were not available, King.com through their attorneys Khaitan & Co filed the copyright infringement suit against the owners of Park Hotel. However, after the order was served on Park Hotel, King realized that it was merely a location for the event and was not directly involved in the infringing activity. The Park Hotel also informed King that the event was being organized by a Hyderabad-based company, Rowthu Projects, and was cancelled.
Based on these facts, King decided to put an end to the suit entering into consent terms with the group. “The consent terms have recognized King’s Candy Crush marks as well-known trademarks. Subsequently, King also sent a notice to Rowthu and certain other websites to cease and desist from using the intellectual property of the game,” legal sources say.
Given the immense popularity of the game globally, several companies have started using its images and visuals, thus infringing the intellectual property rights of the company, legal experts say.