Feasibility of ADR in India

Litigation in India is the primary tool which the people seek for justice, and ADR is less developed in India and ODR has no existence in India. Time-barred court buildings are not much updated to technology much and as Covid-19 incites to move to online activity, the need for an ADR in India will be accomplished at its own step. Analyzing the massive potential of ADR in elucidate the ease to strengthen the business in India for which a seminar was conducted of the concept of ADR in India by NITI Aayog in association of Omidyar and Agami which was co-hosted by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII)-with heads of legal firms and industry representatives on 6th June 2020. ODR is the verdict of small and medium value disputes with the help of technology and techniques to promote the inclusive dispute resolution mechanism. While Courts are welcoming digitization through the attempts made by judiciary which are more efficient, ascendable, with collaborative structure of control, deliver award affordably and adequately. Resolutions are crucially required and efforts made by multi stake-holders including Senior judges of the Supreme Court, secretaries from key government ministries, leaders of industry, legal experts, and general counsels of leading enterprises, scrutinize the opportunities and aspects of future in advance to endeavour collaboratively to insure the efforts taken for resolution of enhancing scope of Online dispute resolution in India.[1]

Impressive words were made by CEO of NITI Aayog, Amitabh Kant in his speech, the significant meeting is the opening of collaborative activity that addresses the passage of adaption of technology in the direction of efficient and affordable access to justice post pandemic also be holding a visionary period in the history of India’s court system. In today’s age of data-driven solutions and machine learning, ODR administered the possibility to conclude a substantial percentage of disputes at the ground of their manifestation without bothering the courts. Revolutionary and forward looking development in justice delivery are critical components that can alter the course of access to justice in an remarkable manner.

Desh Gaurav Sekhri, OSD, NITI Aayog, enunciates the need of facilitating an ecosystem that is useful for the integrated stakeholders who are being active players to make sure that ODR becomes a point of first contact for dispute evasion, regulation, avoidance and resolution.’ Justice Dhananjay Chandrachud uttered on access to justice and technology ‘Above all there needs to be a fundamental change in the mindset-look upon dispute resolution not as relatable to a place, namely a court, where justice is “administered” but as a service that is availed of.’ According to Ajay Bahl who is a Chairman of Judicial Reforms Committee CII and Founding Partner of AZB & Partners, if there is any restrains in the law and order of the state which questions the potency of ODR initiative in India, it must be eradicated. B.N Sri-Krishna, former Justice of Supreme Court, Emphasizing that ODR can act as an aggregate to the court system, ‘It will be an auxiliary of the court system, in the sense that it will thwart a large number of litigations that chaos the courts. A litigant does not need to travel from Kerala to Delhi to solve his dispute, he/she can resolve it through the electronic platform. Online Dispute Resolution can help deliver justice to the doorstep of the litigant.

 Shilpa Kumar who is Partner in Omidyar Network India and Investments, put her view on impact of ODR on businesses in India, that when Legal Tech in general and ODR specifically, when clashed, it will transform the life of businessmen and citizens particularly, of micro, small and medium enterprises in three ways, one, number of disputes accelerate each day which prudent person finds time taking and costly, but with the commencement of ODR, it will curtail it to cost effective and less time taking. Second, it will give chance to citizen and consumer to raise his/her grief before and under the inspection and review of third party at the click of the button, that will intensify consumer to count on businesses and improve consumer’s retention. Third, once ODR firms have assembled ample of data around disputes, it can start feeding back into business decisions regarding the product and service being offered. This will help businesses sharpen their offerings besides improving access to dispute resolution.

Covid-19 disseminate the persuasive stipulation of ODR in India and desires the significant operation regarding the same, with the possibility of eruption of cases outbursts before the court in matters related to lending, property, retail, credit and commerce, probably in future, ODR becomes the stratagem in dispute resolution and will gain enormous appreciation. CII took a step to commence the reasonability of ODR by imparting training through various seminars, conferences and research works at the national as well as international platform to enhance and promote ODR which is time and cost efficient and promoting consistency among three pillars that is legislature, executive and judiciary, also there is no need to submit to laws of another country for dispute resolution and can beat the language barriers and cultural differences. A multi-stakeholder initiation will be ventured in the coming weeks to help accomplish this in a viable, productive, and in an efficient manner for the renewal of justice delivery across various facets.

[1]  Catalyzing Online Dispute Resolution in India, NITI Aayog, https://niti.gov.in/catalyzing-online-dispute-resolution-india ( last visited November 21, 2020)

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