Public policy arbitration India


The law of arbitration in India has undergone a significant transformation over the years. Evolving from insufficient process to becoming the most preferred method of dispute resolution, Arbitration and Conciliation Act has become the new answer to every commercial dispute. In this article, we will be discussing the recent shift in Arbitration and the effect of case laws which has made Arbitration, the most go-to method of alternate dispute resolution.  

The law of Arbitration stemmed from the Arbitration Act 1940, which faced major backlash for being regressive. To address the issues faced in the Act of 1940, India introduced the landmark legislation of Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996. The improved legislation focused on strengthening alternate dispute resolution and minimizing the interference of Courts. Subsequent to 1996, the said Act has been amended various times to adapt with the changing times.  

Besides jurists, the Indian Courts have also played a significant role in structuring the Arbitration and Conciliation Act from 1996 to the present date. By passing celebrated judgments such as Bharat Aluminium and Co. Vs. Kaiser Aluminium and Co.”  to Perkins Eastman Architects DPC & Anr. Vs. HSCC Ltd”, the Hon’ble Supreme Court has consistently advocated the pro-arbitration stance and paved the way for Arbitration in India.  

In pursuance to global recognition of the Arbitration law of India, significant case laws and amendments have emerged with the purpose of making India an arbitration hub globally, however the concept the recognition and enforcement of foreign arbitral award is yet to be tapped to its full potential. The Hon’ble Supreme Court vide its recent decisions in Vijay Karia v. Prysmian Cavi E Sistemi SRL” and “Centrotrade Minerals and Metals Inc. v.  Hindustan Copper Ltd” has made the procedure for enforcement and recognition of foreign awards much efficient, nonetheless, the need of enforcements of foreign awards demands new answers. 


It is an undisputed fact that Arbitration has emerged as the most sought-after method of dispute resolution due to its various advantages. It has made the resolution of disputes speedier and efficient, which is also the prime reason behind adding the arbitration clause in almost every agreement. With the establishment of organisations like the Mumbai Centre for International Arbitration (MCIA) and the Delhi International Arbitration Centre (DIAC), institutional arbitration has increased in India, which will further flourish Arbitration in the country. It can be safely concluded that law, being dynamic in nature demands new answers on every step of the way and since 1996, Arbitration through various amendments has been successful in adapting to the changing needs and will continue to do so in the future to come. 

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