Friday, September 17, 2010

ADR In India Needs Urgent Reforms

Law Minister Veerappa Moily has recently suggested that India has world class arbitration facilities like Singapore. The statement though ambitious is far from truth.

Firstly, the alternative dispute resolution (ADR) system of India needs reforms as it is in a really bad shape.

Secondly, the arbitration infrastructure in India needs to be established.

Thirdly, contemporary dispute resolution methods like online dispute resolution (ODR) and e-courts are missing in India. Even the national litigation policy of India (NLPI) failed to consider ODR and e-courts as effective methods of out of court dispute resolution.

International organisations like United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL), World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), World Bank, International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), etc are working in the direction of upgrading ADR related mechanisms. India must also keep in mind these developments and make good efforts to harmonise its laws as per the contemporary international ADR standards.

Recently, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has suggested use of arbitration for resolving security related disputes. Further, Veerappa Moily is also stressing hard to amend the arbitration and conciliation act 1996 to make it more effective.

Although, efforts for streamlining the ADR mechanism in India are laudable yet they are far from being sufficient to make India a global hub of arbitration. This is why Moily’s statement seems to be a dream but not reality.