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Arbitration, the London Court of International Arbitration India, the Singapore International Arbitration Centre and the International Chamber of Commerce, amongst others.


Q


Do you foresee the need for legislative change in the next 12-24 months, if so why?


The legislative changes that we expect are the passage of the Commercial Divisions of the High Courts Bill, 2009 and certain amendments to the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996. In this respect, the Commercial Divisions of the High Courts Bill is presently pending before the Parliament of India. This bill seeks to create a division in each High Court in India to handle commercial disputes in excess of a specified value. This measure will reduce the duration of litigation of such disputes, and is thus a welcome measure. Another expected legislative change is the


passage of amendments to the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996. The Ministry of Law and Justice issued a consultation paper in 2010 proposing certain amendments to the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 to inter alia reduce the interference of the court in foreign arbitral awards and seeks to restrict the applicability of the expansive construction of ‘public policy’, for the purpose of setting aside/refusing to enforce awards, to domestic awards alone. We believe that the proposed amendments are necessary for the purpose of facilitating the arbitral process, particularly with respect to foreign arbitral awards.


We hope and aspire to continue to enjoy a prominent place in the dispute resolution space in India, and to continue to serve our clients.


Q


What are the future aspirations and direction for your company? How do you see your practice area progressing for the rest of 2011?


AZB and Partners has been awarded the “Best National Law Firm (India)” at the Chambers Asia Law Awards, 2010, and has been rated as one of the leading firms for dispute resolution at these awards. Furthermore, we have recently been selected as one of the Global Arbitration Review’s 100 specialist arbitration firms worldwide. An illustrative list of the awards received by AZB and Partners includes the “Firm of Year (India” at the PLC Which Lawyer? Awards, “Most Trusted Law Firm of the Year” at


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InterContinental Finance Magazine Global Awards, 2010 and “Full Service Law Firm of the Year” at the ACQ Country Awards for Achievement 2010. We hope and aspire to continue to enjoy a


prominent place in the dispute resolution space in India, and to continue to serve our clients. With respect to the practice area, we believe that there will be an increasing trend for commercial entities to seek resolution of their disputes through litigation and arbitration, particularly institutional arbitration. There is also an increase in regulatory investigations. Further, we note an increasing trend towards the


promotion of alternative dispute resolution mechanisms, such as arbitration and mediation. In fact, Supreme Court in Moti Ram v. Ashok Kumar, (2011) 1 SCC 466, has recently ruled that unlike court proceedings, mediation proceedings in India are confidential, and that the mediator is not permitted to disclose the matters discussed during the proceeding. It should be noted that there is not statutory stipulation in India that mediation proceedings are meant to be confidential, and thus this ruling is a welcome measure for the promotion of mediation as a form of dispute resolution. fi


Contact:


Zia Mody, Managing Partner AZB & PARTNERS Express Towers 23rd Floor


Nariman Point Mumbai 400 021


Tel: + 91 22 6639 6880 Fax: + 91 22 6639 6888


Email: zia.mody@azbpartners.com


Shreyas Jayasimha AZB & PARTNERS AZB House 67-4 4th Cross Lavelle Road Bangalore 560 001


Tel: + 91 80 4240 0500 Fax: + 91 80 2221 3947 Email: shreyas.jayasimha@azbpartners.com


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