Arbitrability of Antitrust Disputes: A case against the orthodox approach of the Indian Courts

Ojasvi Sharma, final year law student, Nirma University

Introduction

Arbitrability of disputes has always been a big fuss amongst the scholars. No law or act in India prescribes the subject matter of disputes which could be resolved through arbitration. Albeit, § 2(3) of the Arbitration & Conciliation Act, 1996 [“A & C Act”] clarifies that Part-I shall not affect the operation of any other laws in the country and certain disputes may not be submitted for resolution through arbitration. The issue of arbitrability of disputes relating to Competition law is contestable. The dubitable proposition is ‘whether a competition law dispute arising out of a contractual agreement between two parties could be submitted to an arbitral tribunal’. In other words, whether a dispute resolution mechanism primarily focused to address private parties’ concerns and is very much confidential could resolve an issue arising out of Competition law, which is of ‘Public Nature’ or includes ‘Public Interest’.

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