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Important Judgements Passed By Indian Courts On Arbitration Law

The legislature made important developments in the field of arbitration in recent times. A few of them are:

Proddatur Cable TV Digi services v. Siti Cable Network Limited

Whether the Perkins Eastman Architects DPC v. HSCC (India) Limited judgement also apply to ongoing arbitrations?

Held: The prohibition against the appointment of a sole arbitrator by one of the parties to the agreement as articulated in the Perkins case would also apply to ongoing arbitrations which were being conducted under the Arbitration Act as amended by the ACA Act, 2015.

Shri Chand Construction and Apartments Pvt. Ltd. v. Tata Capital Housing Finance Ltd.

Whether there can be a valid arbitration clause providing for arbitration of claims of one of the parties and providing for the remedy of the Court or any other forum for claims of the other party?

Held: The words "all or certain disputes" in S.7 of the Act permits classification of disputes but not of of claims. Once the time for filing written statement has been extended, the time for filing the application under S.8 of the Arbitration Act also stands extended.

Dr. Bina Modi v. Lalit Modi & Ors.

Whether the procedure being followed by ICC is repugnant to the Arbitration Act and whether the principles pertaining to anti-suit injunction are attracted to anti- arbitration injection suits?

Held: The Arbitration Act is governed by the principle of freedom of parties and S.19 expressly provides that the parties are free to agree on the procedure to be followed by the Arbitral Tribunal in conducting the proceedings. Considering the status of the parties who belong to a business family and are well alive to litigation and arbitrations of all kind, it cannot be said that they were not aware of the procedure of the ICC. The ground of haste makes waste cannot be invoked. The Amendment to S.8 does not change the bar to the jurisdiction of the court vide. S.5 of the Act. No window has been opened to permit a judicial authority to intervene if it finds no valid arbitration agreement existing to injunct arbitration. It is only when a substantive action is brought before the Court and a plea of S.8 is taken that the legislature has permitted the court to go into the question of existence of a valid arbitration agreement before referring the parties to arbitration. The principles pertaining to anti-suit injunction suits are not attracted to anti-arbitration injunction suits for the reason of the Arbitration Act being a complete Code in itself and the 1996 Act empowers theTribunal to rule on its own jurisdiction.

MMTC Limited v. Anglo American Metallurgical Coal Pty. Ltd. 

The scope of interference by Court under S.37 of the Act. 

Held: On general principles of S. 37, the Court should forbear from interfering in conclusions reached by the Tribunal. However, if the court finds that the conclusions drawn by the Tribunal is not supported by a plain, objective and clear-eyed reading of documents, it would not flinch in interfering and correcting such conclusion. 

  • Proddatur Cable TV Digi Services v. Siti Cable Network Limited
  • Shri Chand Construction and Apartments Pvt. Ltd. v. Tata Capital Housing Finance Ltd.
  • Dr. Bina Modi v. Lalit Modi & Ors.

BY : Ankona

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