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Malaysian chicken curry behind McCurry2009/09/08KUALA LUMPUR, Tues: It was business as usual at Restoran McCurry in Jalan Ipoh here, after the owner finally won a legal battle against global fast food giant McDonald's over the use of the 'Mc' trademark.After spending eight years, and in his own words, "a substantial sum", A.M.S.P. Suppiah and wife Kanageswary, were relieved when met at their modest Indian eatery.Kanageswary said the word, 'McCurry', was culled from Malaysian chicken curry, one of the specialities of the restaurant that employs 18 workers.The publicity from the case has also earned the qualified accountant enquiries from abroad to franchise the McCurry name."I am very relieved now. All my prayers have been answered...now, I can look forward to the future," said Suppiah who recently went to India for a temple pilgrimage.Even while speaking to Bernama in the restaurant with newspaper clippings of the case plastered on its walls, his mobile phone kept ringing as friends and well-wishers congratulated the father of three.Suppiah, 55, was interviewed by Al-Jazeera TV, Reuters and other international news services and television channels.He started McCurry in 1999, but never thought that the day would come when he would be confronted by Mcdonald's in court.Since April, when the Court of Appeal ruled that McDonald's did not have a monopoly over the 'Mc' prefix, offers came from Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Britain, United States and Australia to use the 'McCurry' trademark and for joint ventures."McCurry is a very strong name," said Suppiah who was educated in New Zealand where he also resided for 12 years.But it was still too early to mull the opportunity overseas because it would cost a lot of money and work, he added.Asked whether he was confident of winning the legal fight, Suppiah said he had strong grounds because McDonald's had lost two similar cases in Britain in 2001 and Singapore in 2004."There is already a precedent...our food and the restaurant set-up is totally different," he said.The McCurry versus McDonald's case was finally settled today by the country's highest court, the Federal Court, which also ordered McDonald's to pay RM10,000 as costs to McCurry.A high court had first ruled in favour of McDonald's but McCurry took the fight to the Court of Appeal which ruled it was wrong to assume that McDonald's had a monopoly on the use of the prefix 'Mc'.During the court hearings, McCurry contended that McDonald's could not claim monopoly or exclusive rights as 'Mc' was extensively used around the world as surnames, particularly by people of Scottish origin. -- BERNAMA
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