Time ripe for law on compulsory pre-litigation mediation: CJI Bobde

New Delhi: Chief Justice of India (CJI), Justice Sharad Arvind Bobde said that arbitration is not meant to mirror litigation.

Institutional arbitration has met with limited success in India, the CJI was quoted as saying at the Indian Council of Arbitration (ICA) ‘3rd International Conference on Arbitration In The Era of Globalization’. It is a well-known fact that Indian parties still show a strong preference for adhoc over institutional arbitration, he said.

The CJI said it is clear that for institutional arbitration to expand its footprint in India, it would require concerted support from all stakeholders, in particular members of the legal profession.

“A robust arbitration bar is critical to the development of institutional arbitration in India as it would ensure availability and accessibility of practitioners with knowledge & experience in field of arbitration,” Justice Bobde said.

He added that with sheer diversity & quantum of matters being submitted to arbitration, the presence of a specialist arbitration bar with members who have not migrated from the general bar, who are working in close coordination with competent arbitral institutions is imperative.

The CJI further added saying, “Pre-litigation mediation is critical to resolve disputes & reduce the stress on courts & judicial system. We must structure courses and programmes to certify professionals in mediation.”

Making a remark: “As we conceptualise international arbitration in a globalized era, we must also be cognizant of the synergistic opportunities available for international arbitration through utilization of disruptive technologies,” SA Bobde said.