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Sunday 19 April 2015
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High Court to start arbitration centre soon

Rohith B R and Subhash Chandra N S Bangalore:

New facility to function on the lines of Bangalore Mediation Centre

To ensure speedy disposal of arbitration matters, the High Court of Karnataka will soon establish an arbitration centre in Bangalore.

The proposed centre, to be run by the High Court, is likely to function from the first week of December. The facility will be a first of its kind in South India and the second in the country after the Delhi High Court Arbitration Centre (DAC).

Sources in the High Court told Deccan Herald that the arbitration centre, wherein litigants will be allowed to take recourse to arbitration as their chosen mode for settlement of disputes, will be established next to the office of Karnataka Udyog Mitra located in Khanija Bhavan in the City.

“The arbitration centre will have features similar to that of the DAC and, will go a long way in resolving disputes pertaining to private parties,” said a senior official.
During the hearing of a petition on Friday, Chief Justice Vikramajit Sen observed that the arbitration centre would probably function from the first week of December and, called upon the advocate community to join hands with the High Court in making the new facility a success.

Very expensive

As the private arbitration facilities are too expensive, “the permanent arbitration centre being established by the High Court will be cost-effective. Also, the matters will be disposed off at a faster pace here, within 90 to 120 days. In the rarest of rare cases, the President can extend the time,” High Court judge Justice K L Manjunath told Deccan Herald.

Justice Manjunath, who is likely to be the chairperson of the centre, said that the new centre will function on the lines of Bangalore Mediation
Centre.

A district judge will be appointed as the director and a senior divisional judge as deputy director. Retired senior judges of the Supreme Court and the High Court and, chief engineers  would be on the panel of experts.  Depending on the nature of the cases,  arbitrators will be empaneled, added a source.

Other services

Advocate T Usman, who practises at the High Court, said litigants never had a permanent arbitration centre in Bangalore. In Chennai, there is Nani Palkhivala Arbitration Center (NPAC), which provides halls and other required services for conducting arbitration by charging reasonable fees. In Bangalore too, there are some private arbitration centres run by advocates and, some such centres function from hotels, he added.

What does it offer to litigants

*The centre ensures settlement of disputes by arbi­t­r­ation saving cost and time
* Dedicated team of lawyers and an efficient secretariat forms the core of the Centre
* Recordings of proceedings and witness statements to be made available the same day
* Recordings can be watched on a large screen at the Centre
* Consultation rooms for litigants and their representatives and chambers for arbitrators
* Fee structure to suit
litigants of all categories


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