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Arbitration Insights: Addressing Global Challenges and Unraveling the Complexities in India's Legal Terrain

Arbitration, as an alternative dispute resolution mechanism, boasts numerous advantages like speed, flexibility, and confidentiality. However, it isn't without its challenges, both globally and specifically in India. This note explores these issues, highlighting critical case laws and their implications.

Challenges regarding arbitration that occur globally are, Lack of Uniformity in Laws, the patchwork of national arbitration laws creates confusion and inconsistency. While the New York Convention seeks to facilitate international award enforcement, differing interpretations and inconsistent implementation by member states remain hurdles (UN Commission on International Trade Law, "Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration," 1985).

As well as, Arbitrator Bias and Lack of Independence, Concerns about arbitrator impartiality can undermine the entire process. International Bar Association Guidelines aim to address conflicts of interest, but challenges persist (International Bar Association, "IBA Guidelines on Conflicts of Interest in International Arbitration," 2014).

Additionally, the specific the issues of arbitration in India are, Procedural Inefficiencies and Backlogs, The overburdened Indian judicial system has fuelled reliance on arbitration. However, perceived inefficiencies within arbitral proceedings and delays in award enforcement raise concerns (Singh, Ranbir, "Arbitration in India: Emerging Trends and Challenges," Journal of Legal Research, 2015, 37(4), 357-384).

As well as, Enforceability of Awards, Despite the 2015 Arbitration and Conciliation Act amendments aimed at streamlining procedures and enhancing enforceability, concerns persist around delays and the enforceability of awards, particularly when public policy considerations are involved (India Code, "The Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act, 2015," Ministry of Law and Justice, accessed January 19, 2024,

The leading case laws that illustrate the issues of arbitration in India are of, Board of Control for Cricket in India v. Kochi Cricket Pvt. Ltd. (2018): This Supreme Court case emphasized minimal judicial interference and speedy resolution but also highlighted concerns about the public policy exception's potential misuse for refusing enforcement, advocating for a balanced approach (Supreme Court of India, "Board of Control for Cricket in India v. Kochi Cricket Pvt. Ltd.," AIR 2018 SC 2000).

As well as, Voestalpine Schienen Gmbh v. Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Ltd. (2017):
This case addressed arbitrator bias, setting aside an award due to non-disclosure of a potential conflict (as is a rule under section 5 and 7 of the Indian Arbitration and conciliation act, 1996 with its remedies under section 12(5) of the same). It underscored the importance of arbitrator impartiality and the need for maintaining process integrity (Supreme Court of India, "Voestalpine Schienen Gmbh v. Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Ltd.," AIR 2017 SC 1950).

In conclusion I would like to mention that, While arbitration offers a valuable dispute resolution tool, both global and Indian contexts present significant challenges. Addressing these issues necessitates a multi-pronged approach involving legislative reforms, adherence to international best practices, and continued judicial scrutiny. By tackling these complexities, arbitration can truly fulfil its potential as a swift, fair, and effective mechanism for resolving disputes.

Written By: Pawanii Thukral Tiwari

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