Green the Gap, the Delhi based up-cycling store run by the NGO Swechha, is being threatened with a potential law suit by American apparel retailing giant GAP for allegedly infringing upon the retailers trademark. Green the Gap sells up-cycled merchandise like T shirts and accessories through their online store as well.
Through their lawyers, the Apparel retailer wrote to Navin Joshua Naresh and Vimlendu Kumar Jha who run Green the Gap, that they must stop using all GAP marks and sign an undertaking which required them cease all use of GAP in any manner including its use on Green the Gap’s online store.
In India, the GAP marks are used and registered in many classes for bags, clothing and footwear and retail services, the legal notice sent by GAP earlier this month said.
Folks at Green The Gap, who have been running the business since 2008, said that since they do not use the word GAP in isolation and it is used in conjunction with “Green” and “The” and along with their logo, it doesn’t violate any trademarks. “The word GAP used by our client has been used with reference to its dictionary meaning which means hiatus, void, space, interval and it is well established that dictionary words or words of common language cannot be monopolized,” Green The Gap’s lawyers stated in their reply.
GAP is being blamed by experts for picking on small and well meaning institutions instead of supporting them in their cause. Campaignasia.com, quotes brand consultant Harish Bijoor saying that this case will be seen as Gap the Goliath bullying Green the Gap the David.