Published on: 24 September 2023 at 15:46 IST
Court: Supreme Court of India
Citation: Alpine Housing Development Corpn. V. Ashok S. Dhariwal (2023)
Honourable Supreme Court of India has held that a Court can permit a party who has assailed the award on the grounds set out in section 34(2)(a) of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 to file additional affidavit in the form of evidence in an exceptional circumstances on the matters not containing the record of the arbitrator that certain things are relevant to the determination of the issues of the Arbitration Appeal.
24. The ratio of the aforesaid three decisions on the scope and ambit of section 34(2)(a) pre-amendment would be that applications under sections 34 of the Act are summary proceedings; an award can be set aside only on the grounds set out in section 34(2)(a) and section 34(2)(b); speedy resolution of the arbitral disputes has been the reason for enactment of 1996 Act and continues to be a reason for adding amendments to the said Act to strengthen the aforesaid object; therefore in the proceedings under section 34 of the Arbitration Act, the issues are not required to be framed, otherwise if the issues are to be framed and oral evidence is taken in a summary proceedings, the said object will be defeated; an application for setting aside the arbitral award will not ordinarily require anything beyond the record that was before the arbitrator
However, if there are matters not containing such records and the relevant determination to the issues arising under section 34(2)(a), they may be brought to the notice of the Court by way of affidavits filed by both the parties’ the cross-examination of the persons swearing in to the affidavits should not be allowed unless absolutely necessary as the truth will emerge on the reading of the affidavits filed by both the parties.
Therefore, in an exceptional case being made out and if it is brought to the court on the matters not containing the record of the arbitrator that certain things are relevant to the determination of the issues arising under section 34(2)(a), then the party who has assailed the award on the grounds set out in section 34(2)(a) can be permitted to file affidavit in the form of evidence. However, the same shall be allowed unless absolutely necessary.
Drafted By Abhijit Mishra