Report No. 253
(iii) Improving legal culture
3.4.1 The approach of the redrafted Bill as proposed in this Report will therefore be to set up Commercial Courts and Commercial Divisions within High Courts, which will function as model courts establishing new practices and norms of practice in commercial litigation that can, over time, be scaled up and extended to all civil litigation in India. The changes being suggested are not intended to be limited only to high value commercial disputes but should be extended to all disputes over a period of time after assessing the functioning of the Commercial Courts.
The Commercial Courts, apart from being ends in themselves, are also a pilot project to reform civil litigation across the country and tackle the twin issues of delay and pendency. Ideally, the Commercial Courts should be a model for the functioning of all civil courts in India and the procedure followed here could be the basis for a larger reform of the CPC. Thus, concerns that commercial courts only serve "elitist" concern will be addressed in the long run.
3.4.2 That India needs commercial courts for the effective and efficient resolution of high value commercial disputes is beyond doubt. The criticism of the 2009 Bill is aimed at the structure and functioning of the commercial courts.
Nevertheless, the flaws pointed out can be overcome with amendments to procedural laws and other measures as have been recommended below. Commercial courts structured along the lines recommended in this Report are intended to meet the twin objectives of ensuring speedy and quality resolution of commercial disputes and providing a template for reforming the civil justice system in India.