Report No. 163
Procedure for A.D.R.
Q.22. Order 10, rule 1A (New) (Alternative dispute resolution): Clause 20(1) of the Bill
Order 10 of the Code deals with examination of the parties by the court at the pre-trial stage. In this Order, the Bill proposes the addition of new rule 1A, to the effect that after recording the parties' admissions and denials, the court "shall direct the parties to opt (for) either mode of the settlement outside the court as specified in sub-section (i) of section 89".
This new rule is, in substance consequential on the proposed amendment, of section 89 (as per clause 7 of the Bill. However, it is necessary to point out that sector 89 (as proposed by Clause 7 of the Bill) begins as under:
"89(i) Where it appears to the court that there exist elements of a settlement which may be acceptable to the parties the court shall formulate the terms of settlement....". [See under Q.3, above].
Thus, under section 89 as proposed, the court is to take into account the possibility of settlement in the particular case, while proposed Order 10, rule 1A contains no such requirement. On the general principle that rules should not go beyond the sections, it would be a point worth considering if Order 10, rule, 1A (proposed) would not require some change.
[This point of drafting is, of course, in addition to the major question whether ADR through court, with "limited" compulsion under section 89, can reduce delay.]