Report No. 246
Scheme of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996
10. While drafting the 1996 Act, one of the major considerations was the need to curtail delays in the arbitral process. Another objective was to bring in its fold, international commercial arbitrations; in contrast the 1940 Act only dealt with domestic arbitrations. Some of these objectives are clearly reflected in the Objects and Reasons of the Arbitration and Conciliation Bill, 1995 as stated herein below:
(a) To comprehensively cover international commercial arbitration and conciliation as also domestic arbitration and conciliation;
(b) To minimise the supervisory role of courts in the arbitral process;
(c) To provide that every final arbitral award is enforced in the same manner as if it was a decree of court.
11. The 1996 Act covers both international and domestic arbitration, i.e., where at least one party is not an Indian national and where both parties are Indian nationals respectively.
12. Part I of the 1996 Act titled 'Arbitration' is general in nature and contains ten chapters. Part II deals with 'Enforcement of Certain Foreign Awards'. Chapter I of Part II deals with New York Convention Awards and Chapter II deals with Geneva Convention Awards. Part III of the 1996 Act deals with Conciliation which does not have any bearing on the present Report. Part IV of the 1996 Act deals with supplementary provisions.
13. The 1996 Act also contains three Schedules. The First Schedule refers to the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitration Awards (also covered under Section 44 of the 1996 Act). The Second Schedule refers to Protocol on Arbitration Clauses (also covered under Section 53 of the 1996 Act). The Third Schedule refers to the Convention on the Execution of Foreign Arbitration Awards.