Court hearing objections under Section 34 of the Act should not interfere with the award merely because there are two views are possible
An appeal was filed under Section 37 of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 (Act) challenging the dismissal of objections filed under Section 34 of the Act. It was held in the impugned judgment that Appellants in the instant matter in the guise of trying to compromise took three adjournments but failed to appear, and thus this was nothing more than the strategy to unnecessarily delay the case. Appellant’s right to contest in the arbitration proceedings were closed and later based on the evidence on record an award was passed in favour of the Respondent in the present matter. Appellant contended that the claim petition was misconceived because only a reference was sought for before the arbitrator of disputes and there were no detailed averments.
It was held that even though the claim petition was not in detail, there is no specific format of a claim petition. The Court further observed that the entire object of arbitration would be defeated if parties are allowed to implement strategy to delay the process. Three adjournments as were taken in the present matter though may not be too much but at the same there were held to be not less also for the arbitrator to close the case of the Appellants herein.
It was further held that Court hearing objections under Section 34 of the Act should not interfere with the award merely because there are two views are possible and accordingly, the Court in first appeal will also have restricted jurisdiction with respect to challenge to a judgment dismissing objections.
[AVCO Traders Pvt. Ltd. and Ors. vs. Sandeep Enterprises]
(Delhi HC, 10.03.2014)