Meanwhile, in 1985, keeping in view the increasing cross-border transactions and disputes arising thereof, UNCITRAL came out with a Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration, he said.
“In India, with economic liberalisation, a need was felt to provide a viable alternative to the parties, both national and international, to resolve their commercial disputes. The Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 was enacted in line with the model law with the hope to provide an effective alternative to court-based resolution.
“Then Prime Minister of India, P.V. Narasimha Rao, had said during the inauguration of the International Conference on Alternate Dispute Resolution in New Delhi 26 years ago, and I quote, ‘Any democracy worth the name must provide for adequate and effective means of dispute resolution at a reasonable cost; otherwise, the rule of law becomes a platitude and people may take law into their own hands, disrupting peace, order and good governance. Effective dispute-resolution is also necessary to secure the smooth functioning of trade and commerce’.”
To make the arbitral process more effective and to bring it at par with the international law on arbitration, the Arbitration and Conciliation Act of 1996 was amended in 2015, in 2019, and in 2021, he said.