India

The Indian arbitration scene underwent a complete makeover in 2015 with the enactment of the Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015 (the Amendment Act), which brought sweeping changes to the Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996 (the Act). This has long been in the offing, and scholars and practitioners alike hope that it is enough to breathe fresh life into an otherwise faltering alternative dispute resolution mechanism. While the promulgation of the Act in 1996 helped to make arbitration the default choice for adjudication of commercial disputes, over the last two decades, the process of arbitration has started to resemble traditional court proceedings in India. Inordinate delays, high costs, excessive interference by courts and misinterpretation of some of the provisions, resulted in a growing sense of exasperation among users of the process.

An amendment to the Act to remedy some of these issues had been on the cards for quite some time. After two aborted attempts – one in 2001 and the other in 2010 – the law was finally amended by the promulgation of the Arbitration & Conciliation (Amendment) Ordinance 2015 (the Ordinance), which was subsequently replaced by the Amendment Act.

The Amendment Act incorporates most proposals set out in the 246th Law Commission Report released in 2014 (Law Commission Report), but also introduces some unique provisions not hitherto seen in any leading arbitration statute. Some of these provisions contain extraordinary measures to remedy certain particular issues pertaining to ad hoc domestic arbitrations, such as delay in proceedings and high costs. The Amendment Act also incorporates other changes with far-reaching consequences – some effecting a significant departure from the existing law, some clarifying certain controversies, and others simply confirming the law as declared through interpretations received from courts over time.

This article analyses some key provisions of the amended Act that are likely to significantly impact the conduct of arbitral proceedings. We briefly consider the extent to which the recommendations of the Law Commission Report have been incorporated into the Amendment Act, the probable reason for the amendment, and the likely effect on arbitral proceedings.

High courts now exclusive forum for relief in international commercial arbitrations

Under the Act as it stood prior to the amendment, ‘court’ was defined to mean the principal civil court of original jurisdiction in a district, for both domestic and international commercial arbitrations.1 Only under limited circumstances, as in case of exercise of its ordinary original civil jurisdiction over the subject matter, could the High Court deal with a matter under the Act. The result was that in most cases international parties had to approach lower courts in remote parts of India to obtain the necessary reliefs.

The ramifications for an international party were that it had to deal with an unfamiliar legal system, language barriers, clogged court dockets, different interpretation by different courts at the same level and last but not the least unfamiliarity of lower courts with arbitration law. Bearing these issues in mind, the Law Commission Report recommended that in cases of international commercial arbitration, references to ‘court’ ought to mean the high court in exercise of its ordinary original civil jurisdiction having jurisdiction to decide the questions forming the subject-matter of the arbitration, or a high court having jurisdiction to hear appeals from decrees of courts subordinate to that high court, with respect to subject matter of arbitration. Accordingly, the Amendment Act adopted the new definition of ‘court’ with respect to international commercial arbitration.2 The effect of this amendment is that, in all international commercial arbitrations seated in India, high courts will be the exclusive forum for reliefs under the Act. One obvious drawback of this change, which is being overlooked in all quarters, is that this move will in all likelihood further increase the pendency levels at the High Court.

Expanded scope of judicial authority’s power to refer parties to arbitration

The Act, pre-amendment, provided that a judicial authority before which an action is brought in a matter which is also the subject matter of an arbitration agreement, shall refer the parties to arbitration if a party applies for the same not later than submitting his first statement on the substance of the dispute.3 This provision has been fairly successful even in the pre-amendment period, and has generally received a pro-arbitration treatment from courts. Nonetheless three amendments have been brought about to this provision.

The first, and possibly the most controversial issue even in more mature jurisdictions, statutorily allows not only parties to an arbitration agreement, but any person claiming through or under the party, to seek reference of the dispute to arbitration.4 This opens doors for roping in non-signatories to arbitration in arbitrations seated in India. Under the un-amended law the Supreme Court while considering the provisions of section 45 of the Act,5 which applies to international commercial arbitration, allowed joinder of non-signatories to an arbitration agreement under limited circumstances. However, the same could not be applied to domestic arbitrations6 inasmuch as the provision relating thereto was differently worded. The Amendment Act now removes this dichotomy so that non-signatories may be referred to arbitration by courts even in domestic arbitrations.

The second, and the more ambiguous, amendment mandates that reference to arbitration by the judicial authority has to be made notwithstanding any judgment, decree or order of the Supreme Court or any court.7 While the amendment is vaguely worded, it seems to be an attempt to address decisions of courts on arbitrability of various issues such as fraud, severability of issues etc.8 Only time will tell if the courts will interpret this exclusion to be sufficient to negate the varying principles outlined in these decisions. The conclusions reached by the courts in these decisions on arbitrability are based on reasoning unique to each case. Therefore, exclusion that has now been introduced through the Amendment Act may not be sufficient to negate the law laid down in these decisions.

Lastly, the Amendment Act requires the judicial authority, before making the reference to consider prima facie whether there exists a valid arbitration agreement.9 The law as it stood made it mandatory for a judicial authority to refer the parties to arbitration and the scope of any review was extremely limited.

Interim measures: greater powers vested in the arbitral tribunal

The Act provides parties with two avenues for obtaining interim relief – through the court10 and through the arbitral tribunal.11 Perhaps the biggest drawback of the interim protection regime under the pre-amended Act was that the provisions were heavily loaded in favour of approaching the courts rather than the tribunal. At the outset, the parties could agree to divest the tribunal of the power of granting interim reliefs. Further, the powers of the arbitral tribunal to grant interim relief were limited to the subject matter of the dispute; the tribunal was not vested with the wide discretionary powers of the court. Most crucially, there were no provisions enabling enforcement of an order granting interim reliefs by the tribunal.

The Amendment Act, following the recommendations in the Law Commission Report, has aligned the powers of the tribunal to grant interim relief with that of the court. Thus, the tribunal’s power to pass interim orders shall now mirror that of the courts. Also, an order of the tribunal granting interim relief shall be deemed to be an order of the court and shall be enforceable under the Code of Civil Procedure 1908, in the same manner as if it were an order of the court. Moreover under the amended Act once the arbitral tribunal has been constituted, the court shall not entertain an application for interim relief, unless the court finds the remedy afforded by the tribunal inefficacious.12 This amendment is an affirmation of what some courts had already been following in practice.

Furthermore the amendment seeks to plug a loophole in the Act, whereby a party, having obtained interim relief from the court prior to the commencement of arbitration proceeding, would thereafter drag its feet on initiating proceedings. The Amendment Act has addressed this issue by making it mandatory for a party to commence arbitral proceedings within 90 days from the date of an order granting interim relief, or within such further time as the court may determine. This change in law, though borrowed from the Law Commission Report, does not fully reflect its recommendations, inasmuch as it has omitted an important condition, namely that the interim order shall lapse if the arbitral proceedings are not initiated within the statutorily mandated period. In doing so, the Amendment Act has taken the teeth out of this clause, although it is likely that courts will nevertheless interpret the provision such that non-adherence will amount to vacation of the interim protection.

A significant aspect that has not been considered by both the Amendment Act and the Law Commission Report is the development of provisions with respect to emergency arbitrators in many institutional rules. In the recent amendment to the Singapore law, the definition of ‘arbitrator’ was amended to provide for this. It would have been helpful if the Amendment Act had provided that interim measures by emergency arbitrators will also be enforceable in the same manner as orders of the tribunal. This will now have to await interpretation by the courts, and it is likely that courts will recognise emergency arbitrators’ orders in the same manner.

Appointment of arbitrators and grounds for challenge

The provision for appointment of an arbitrator by the court has undergone significant changes following the Amendment Act. Many of the changes that have been effected are a consequence of the propositions of law laid down by the Supreme Court in SBP & Co v Patel Engineering Ltd,13 and have largely conformed to the recommendations in the Law Commission Report.

The pivotal issue under consideration in Patel Engineering was whether the role of the Chief Justice while appointing an arbitrator was administrative or judicial. Ultimately, on analysis, the Court held that the Chief Justice performed a judicial function. Recently, the issue arose once again when the Supreme Court held that since the Chief Justice is not a ‘court’, a decision under section 11 is not a decision of the court and hence, will not have any precedential value.14 The Amendment Act has now finally laid this issue to rest by replacing ‘Chief Justice’ with Supreme Court or High Court.

An unfortunate outcome of Patel Engineering was that the Court interpreted section 11 in such a way as to confer wide powers on the Chief Justice in deciding the existence and validity of the arbitration agreement. The Court held that the Chief Justice enjoyed the power to decide on ‘his own jurisdiction, to entertain the request, the existence of a valid arbitration agreement, the existence or otherwise of a live claim, the existence of the condition for the exercise of his power and on the qualifications of the arbitrator or arbitrators’ and such decision was final. This resulted in excessive interference by courts in subsequent cases, infringing upon the arbitrator’s right under the Act to decide on his own jurisdiction and the scope of the arbitration agreement.15 The Amendment Act has sought to rein this in by providing that the Supreme Court or High Court shall limit its examination only to the existence of the arbitration agreement. However, the Law Commission’s recommendation clarifying that the final decision on jurisdiction ought to be left to the tribunal was not included in the amendments.

Further, Patel Engineering held that the Chief Justice can delegate his or her power of appointment of arbitrators only to another judge of that court. The Amendment Act now clearly provides that the Supreme Court or the High Court may designate any other person or institution as the appointing authority, and further clarifies that such a designation will not be deemed a delegation of judicial power. This paves the way for courts to designate institutions or expert bodies as the appointing authority in appropriate cases.

An aspect on which Patel Engineering stands reaffirmed is with regard to appeal against a decision under section 11. It was held in Patel Engineering that no appeal shall lie against such a decision except under article 136 of the Constitution. This has now received statutory recognition under the Amendment Act.

The Amendment Act has also introduced two crucial provisions with the intention to address the issue of delay.

First, it requires the Supreme Court or the High Court, as the case may be, to endeavour to dispose of the application for appointment of arbitrator within 60 days from the date of service of notice on the other party.16

Second, before appointing an arbitrator, the Supreme Court or the High Court shall seek a disclosure in writing from the prospective arbitrator of circumstances, inter alia, which are likely to affect his or her ability to devote sufficient time to the arbitration, and, in particular, his or her ability to complete the arbitration in 12 months. This provision will help to ensure appointment of arbitrators with sufficient time to expeditiously deal with arbitral proceedings.

What is most interesting is the introduction of a provision requiring the High Court to formulate rules for the purpose of determination of the fee of arbitrators in ad hoc arbitrations. This provision is the first of its kind to be legislatively introduced, and will lead to a fixed fee schedule being imposed. In other jurisdictions such matters are normally left to parties or institutions. While the reason for introduction of such a provision is not hard to fathom in light of the high costs involved in domestic arbitrations, it severely obstructs party autonomy, a hallmark of this form of dispute resolution. Also, it has the potential of impairing the quality of arbitral proceedings.

The Act also now requires a prospective arbitrator to disclose in writing the existence of any past or present relationship with either of the parties or the subject matter of the dispute, which is likely to give rise to justifiable doubts as to his independence and impartiality. The Amendment Act also introduces two schedules – one sets out the grounds that shall serve as a guide in determining whether circumstances exists which give rise to justifiable doubts as to the independence or impartiality of an arbitrator,17 while the other sets out the grounds which would make a prospective arbitrator ineligible for appointment.18 These amendments have been made in accordance with the International Bar Association Guidelines on Conflicts of Interest in International Arbitration (the IBA Guidelines). India was one of the first countries to adopt the guidelines by the IBA and incorporate them into its domestic law.

The 1996 Act had the same provision concerning independence and impartiality as the Model Law. Despite this, the practice of appointing an ex-employee of one of the parties to the proceedings as an arbitrator was rampant, especially in contracts with public sector undertakings. The only restriction which the Supreme Court put on this was that the said employee ought not to be involved in the contract in question.19 The schedule under the new amendment now provides this as a ground for disqualification from appointment.

Although the amendments with regard to independence and impartiality of arbitrators are extremely positive, one aspect that has not received attention is that of the right of unilateral appointment – something which has become a menace in Indian contracts with unequal bargaining powers. In most advanced jurisdictions, such unilateral right of appointment is considered against public policy and not enforced. No such bar exists under Indian law, and the Amendment Act has also failed to address this.

Speedy dispute resolution

One of the most contentious provisions brought about by the Amendment Act is that of the introduction of a time limit before which the arbitral award has to be rendered in case of all arbitrations seated in India.20 Intriguingly, this provision was never recommended by the Law Commission. The provision sets out that the award shall be made within 12 months, extendable for a period of six months if the parties so agree, from the date the arbitral tribunal enters upon the reference. Further, the amendment Act seeks to reward the tribunal with additional fees, as per the agreement of the parties, where the award is rendered within a period of six months from the date the arbitral tribunal enters upon the reference.

If the award is not rendered within the prescribed time period of 12 months, or within the mutually extended period of up to six months, the arbitration proceedings stand terminated unless the period is extended by the court, on an application by either party prior to or after the expiry of the period so specified. However, the courts are to allow the extension only for sufficient cause, and on such terms and conditions as may be imposed by the court. It also provides that an extension application shall be disposed of by the court as expeditiously as possible, and that it shall endeavour to dispose of the matter within a period of 60 days from the date of service of notice on the opposite party. The court may also impose actual or exemplary costs on any of the parties.

It is not difficult to understand why the lawmakers were of the opinion that such a provision ought to be introduced; it is not uncommon for ad hoc arbitrations in India to take more than four to five years to conclude. Unlike international practice, hearings are held in a diffused manner over long periods of time. No time limits either for cross-examination or for arguments are prescribed, and lawyers often misuse the discretion. Many of these issues in ad hoc arbitrations in India originate from the traditional approach to trials in Indian courts. For instance, recording of evidence is neither time bound nor is it conducted on a day-to-day basis in Indian courts. Therefore, although this provision may be peculiar to Indian arbitration law, perhaps an out of ordinary problem requires an extraordinary solution. Having said that, the 12-month deadline seems overambitious and impractical. A more practical deadline would be 24 months, with six months’ extension on parties’ agreement.

Another factor to consider is the institutional delay in Indian courts, which is often beyond the control of the courts and the judges given the sheer number of cases on their docket. A solution that entails lining up before the court to determine future action is a problem in itself. One solution could be to allow the arbitration to continue during the pendency of an extension application, instead of an automatic cessation of the tribunal’s mandate.

Perhaps the most surprising amendment under this provision is the discretion vested in the court to order a reduction of fees of the arbitrator, if the court finds that proceedings have been delayed for reasons attributable to the arbitral tribunal. The court, while deciding an application for extension of time, can even substitute one or all of the arbitrators. These provisions have come under severe criticism, and for good reason. There is nothing within the amended law that indicates whether the arbitrator would be heard before any penalty is levied upon him for the delay. Even if the arbitrator is given an opportunity to put forth his or her case, it would not bode well for the spirit of the arbitral process to have arbitrators participate in proceedings before the court to fix responsibility for the delay. Further, the likelihood of imposition of penalties by courts has the potential of destroying the equilibrium between them and the arbitral tribunals. In the modern view on arbitration, the equation between the two should be that of partners towards a common goal of providing efficient and effective redressal of commercial disputes. This provision puts the courts and tribunals in an adversarial position, which may not be conducive to the development of a healthy participatory role.

The Amendment Act has also inserted a new provision providing for a fast-track procedure for arbitration.21 Under this provision, parties to an arbitration agreement may, before or at the time of the appointment of arbitral tribunal, agree in writing to have their dispute resolved by a fast-track procedure. If parties do opt for a fast-track procedure, the dispute shall be decided on the basis of written pleadings, documents and submissions filed by the parties without any oral hearings. An oral hearing may be held only on a request made by all the parties or if it is considered necessary by the arbitral tribunal to clarify certain issues. If an oral hearing is held, the arbitral tribunal may dispense with any technical formalities and adopt such procedure as deemed appropriate for expeditious disposal of the case. The section also provides that an award is to be made within six months from the date the arbitral tribunal enters upon the reference, failing which the consequences under section 29A would follow. The effect of this amendment is that parties can now choose a fast-track procedure even if they do not wish to subject their arbitration to any institutional rules.

Costs

The Amendment Act has introduced a whole new regime for awarding costs in arbitrations,22 which is in accordance with the recommendations in the Law Commission Report. The section vests the arbitral tribunal with the discretion to determine whether costs are to be paid, the amount of such costs, and when such costs are to be paid. The term ‘costs’ has also been defined to include fee and expenses of arbitrators, courts and witnesses, legal fee and expenses, administrative fee of the institution, and any other expenses incurred in connection with the arbitral or court proceedings and the arbitral award.

The section also sets out certain circumstances, such as conduct of parties, which shall be considered by the court or tribunal when determining the costs.23 This provision is essential in the Indian context, and is in line with the rules of leading arbitration institutions. Such a provision will ensure efficient conduct of the proceedings by disincentivising inequitable or mala fide conduct on the part of either of the parties.

Crucially, the said section has incorporated the ‘cost follows event’ principle – the unsuccessful party shall be ordered to pay the costs of the successful party. If the court or tribunal seeks to make a different order, the reasons for the same have to be recorded in writing. This is a welcome and necessary addition considering the fact that traditionally Indian courts are not known to grant actual costs to parties. By virtue of this amendment, courts and arbitral tribunals will have a clear guide for exercising their discretion in awarding costs, which is completely different from traditional principles under Indian procedural law.

The Amendment Act has also amended the default rate of interest – it has been changed from 18 per cent to 2 per cent higher than the current rate of interest prevalent on the date of award. The unamended provision was often criticised as being penal and without reference to commercial realities. The Amendment Act has, therefore, incorporated the changes suggested in the Law Commission Report in this regard.

Challenge and enforcement of an arbitral award

Extensive changes to the provision for challenge of an arbitral award24 have been introduced through the Amendment Act, which are in accordance with the recommendations of the Law Commission Report. The explanation provided in the relevant provisions under the Act defining ‘public policy’, has now been replaced with a new explanation which brings the legislation in line with judicial precedents. The explanation now states that an award would be in conflict with public policy if the award:

  • was induced or affected by fraud or corruption or in violation of section 75 (confidentiality) or section 81 (admissibility of evidence of conciliation proceedings in other proceedings);
  • is in contravention with the fundamental policy of Indian law; or
  • is in conflict with the most basic notions of morality and justice.25

A second explanation has also been added to the same sub-section clarifying that no review on merits can be undertaken by a court for determining whether the award is in contravention with the fundamental policy of India.26 This explanation was probably added as a way to rein in the expansive definition accorded to the term ‘fundamental policy of India’ by the Supreme Court in ONGC v Western Geco.27

Further, a new subsection has been added to provide that an award in an arbitration exclusively between Indian parties can be set aside if it is vitiated by patent illegality appearing on the face of the award. However, it has been clarified that an award shall not be set aside merely on the ground of erroneous application of the law or by re-appreciation of evidence.28 Patent illegality as a ground for violation of public policy was first introduced by the ONGC v Saw Pipes case.29 The scope of that interpretation had been restricted by subsequent decisions of the courts. However, the amendment has completely done away with that interpretation in case of awards rendered in international commercial arbitrations, thereby reverting to the interpretation in Renusagar case.30 This is a welcome move, as it assures foreign parties of a more hands-off approach from the courts towards challenge of arbitration awards.

The Amendment Act has also added a provision stating that challenge petitions are to be concluded within one year and if courts lower than a High Court are likely to take longer, they will need to seek extension from the High Court.31 While it is unlikely that this deadline will be strictly adhered to in light of the large pendency of cases in Indian courts, such provision will give courts the basis to enforce tight deadlines. In light of the current scenario where challenge petitions often languish in courts for three or four years, this provision would afford some relief to litigants.

Another important amendment warrants that an application filed in court for setting aside the arbitral award would not by itself operate as a stay on enforcement of the award.32 A party would be required to file a separate application before the court for stay of the enforcement, and the court may grant a stay subject to such conditions as it deems fit.33 This is a departure from the earlier provision which provided for an automatic stay of enforcement once an application for setting aside the award was filed. Further, the courts earlier did not have the discretion to impose any conditions, such as depositing part of the arbitral sum, prior to deciding an application for challenge of an arbitral award.34 The Amendment Act now specifically empowers the court to grant a stay of the operation of an award on such conditions as it deems fit, including a direction for deposit.

Applicability of the amendment act

A glaring omission in the Ordinance Act was that it did not provide for a date from which the changes would become effective (ie, whether the same was to be applied prospectively or otherwise). Fortunately, the Amendment Act clearly stipulates that, unless otherwise agreed by the parties, it would be applicable only to those arbitral proceedings that were commenced after the Amendment Act came into effect.35 It further provides that any action taken under the Act as amended by the Ordinance shall be deemed to have been taken under the corresponding provisions of the Act, as amended by the Amendment Act.

An issue that has now arisen with regard to the applicability of the Amendment Act is whether it is prospectively applicable even to post-arbitration proceedings, such as proceedings for setting aside of the arbitral award.

When deciding an application for setting aside of the arbitral award, the Calcutta High Court held that the provisions of the Act as amended by the Amendment Act would be inapplicable as the Amendment Act stipulates that it is applicable only to those proceedings that were commenced after the enactment of the Amendment Act.36 However, the Madras High Court gave a contrary view, and on an interpretation of section 26 of the Amendment Act, held that the amendments would be applicable to all post-arbitration proceedings, including court proceedings.37 It will be interesting to follow the path the judicial interpretation would take in this regard.

Conclusion

The purpose behind the Amendment Act was multifold – to align the statute with judicial precedents, to clarify certain provisions that had received unintended interpretations by the courts, and to address issues that were specific to Indian arbitrations. While the provisions enacted to conform to judicial precedents are straightforward, the greater challenge lay in fine tuning the Act to ensure that it was capable of overcoming issues that commonly arise in arbitrations in India.

Two of the most common problems that domestic arbitrations are afflicted with are delay in proceedings and high costs. It is therefore unsurprising to find that the Amendment Act has introduced several changes in a bid to tackle these two issues. In order to address the problem of delay, proceedings now have to be concluded within a maximum period of 18 months, a fast track procedure has been introduced, and time limits for courts deciding applications under various sections have been imposed. To curb the problem of high costs in arbitrations, the Amendment Act has introduced a provision allowing High Courts to formulate a fixed fee schedule for arbitrator’s fee, and has set out guidelines for arbitrators and the courts to follow when imposing costs on parties. Further, the time limit that has now been put in place for concluding the proceedings would itself ensure that the costs are comparatively low, as the number of hearings would be automatically limited to a large extent.

Mere change in law, without effective implementation will ensure that it fails in achieving its stated objectives. While the attempts made by the legislature are laudable, for the law to be truly effective, there needs to be a paradigm shift in approach to arbitration by all stakeholders to the process, ie, parties, lawyers, arbitrators and the courts. One of the core objectives of arbitration as a mechanism of dispute resolution is to allow parties to adjudicate disputes privately, so as to unburden the courts. This needs to be recognised and acted upon by the different stakeholders in order to truly reap the rewards of the new amendments. Parties filing frivolous applications before courts, or opposing a reference to arbitration solely with a view to drag on litigation, courts giving parties the leeway to carry out such proceedings, arbitrators failing to impose strict timelines on parties during the proceedings are some of the issues that contribute to the larger problem. Unless the Amendment Act is accompanied by a shift in attitude towards the conduct of arbitral proceedings, it may fail to have the desired impact.

Notes

  1. Section 2(1)(e), Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996.
  2. Section 2(1)(e), Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  3. Section 8, Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996.
  4. Section 8(1), Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  5. Chloro Controls (I) P. Ltd. v Severn Trent Water Purification Inc., (2013) 1SCC 641.
  6. Housing Development and Infrastructure Ltd. v Mumbai International Airport Pvt. Ltd., 2013 IndlawMUM 1102.
  7. Supra note 4.
  8. N. Radhakrishnan v Maestro Engineers, (2010) 1 SCC 72; Booz Allen & Hamilton Inc v SBI and Home Finance Ltd., (2011) 5 SCC 532; Sukanya Holdings Pvt. Ltd. v Jayesh H. Pandya, (2003) 5 SCC 531.
  9. Supra note 4.
  10. Section 9, Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996.
  11. Section 17, Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996.
  12. Section 9(3), Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  13. (2005) 8 SCC 618.
  14. State of West Bengal v Associated Contractors, (2015) 1 SCC 32.
  15. Section 16, Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996.
  16. Section 11(13), Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996,  as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  17. Fifth Schedule, Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  18. Seventh Schedule, Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  19. Indian Oil Corporation Ltd. v. Raja Transport Pvt. Ltd., (2009) 8 SCC 520.
  20. Section 29A, Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  21. Section 29B, Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  22. Section 31A, Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  23. Section 31A(3), Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  24. Section 34, Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996.
  25. Explanation 1 to section 34(2)(b), Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  26. Explanation 2 to section 34(2)(b), Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  27. ONGC v Western Geco, (2014) 9 SCC 263.
  28. Section 34(2A), Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  29. (2003) 5 SCC 705.
  30. Renusagar Power Plant Co. Ltd. v. General Electric Company, AIR 1994 SC 860
  31. Section 34(6), Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  32. Section 36(2), Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  33. Section 36(3), Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996, as amended by Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  34. National Aluminium Co. Ltd. v. Pressteel & Fabrications (P) Ltd. and Anr, (2004) 1 SCC 540.
  35. Section 26, Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2015.
  36. Electrosteel Castings Limited v, Reacon Engineers (India) Pvt. Ltd., Application No.1710 of 2015, Calcutta High Court.
  37. New Tirupur Area Development Corporation Ltd. v M/s Hindustan Construction Co. Ltd., Application No. 7674 of 2015 in O.P. No. 931 of 2015, Madras High Court.

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