Chief Justice of India N.V. Ramana on Saturday proposed the forming of a specially constituted authority to “pre-vet” high–stakes commercial and investment agreements to prevent dispute and litigation later on.
The CJI, speaking at the international conference on “arbitration in the era of globalisation” in Dubai, noted how in many cases disputing parties and governments conveniently disown their agreements at the time of its execution, either saying it was void or against public policy or law.
“To avoid such belated objections, it is high time to evolve some special mechanism... one such is pre-vetting by a specially constituted authority of the State, prior to the parties entering into any commercial or investment agreement,” the CJI suggested.
Chief Justice Ramana said such “pre-vetting” could be made completely voluntary.
“Such a vetting process would, of course, be subject to the consent of the contracting parties. This would ensure fewer disputes arising at the execution stage on the nature and sanctity of the agreement and on public policy grounds,” the CJI said.
Suggesting further steps for more effective arbitration in a globalised world, the CJI said ideally the scope for judicial interference from pre–reference stage to challenging an award needed to be minimised.
Chief Justice Ramana highlighted other pre–requisites for effective arbitration of disputes, including strict adherence to timelines for completion of arbitral processes, ensuring execution of arbitral awards and respect for the autonomy of the parties etc.