In the past, statutory provisions on arbitration were contained in three different enactments, namely, The Arbitration Act, 1940, the Arbitration (Protocol and Convention) Act, 1937 and the Foreign Awards (Recognition and Enforcement) Act, 1961. The Arbitration Act laid down the framework within which domestic arbitration was conducted in India, while the other two Acts dealt with foreign awards. The Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 has repealed the Arbitration Act, 1940 and also the Acts of 1937 and 1961, consolidated and amended the law relating to domestic arbitration, international commercial arbitration and enforcement of foreign arbitral awards and also defines the law relating to conciliation, providing for matters connected therewith and incidental thereto on the basis of the Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration adopted by the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) in 1985. The Ordinance which was promulgated by the President of India on the 16th January, 1996 was brought into force with effect from the 25th January, 1996. The Arbitration and Conciliation Bill, 1996, was passed by both houses of Parliament and received the President’s assent on 16th August, 1996 and came on the Statute Book as The ARBITRATION AND CONCILIATION ACT, 1996 (26 of 1996).
New York Convention Awards
44. Definition.- In this Chapter, unless the context otherwise requires, "foreign award" means an arbitral award on differences between persons arising out of legal relationships, whether contractual or not, considered as commercial under the law in force in India, made on or after the 11th day of October, 1960- (a) in pursuance of an agreement in writing for arbitration to which the Convention set forth in the First Schedule applies, and (b) in one of such territories as the Central Government, being satisfied that reciprocal provisions have been made may, by notification in the Official Gazette, declare to be territories to which the said Convention applies.
45. Power of judicial authority to refer parties to arbitration.- Notwithstanding anything contained in Part I or in the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (5 of 1908), a judicial authority, when seized of an action in a matter in respect of which the parties have made an agreement referred to in section 44, shall, at the request of one of the parties or any person claiming through or under him, refer the parties to arbitration, unless it finds that the said agreement is null and void, inoperative or incapable of being performed.
46. When foreign award binding. - Any foreign award which would be enforceable under this Chapter shall be treated as binding for all purposes on the persons as between whom it was made, and may accordingly be relied on by any of those persons by way of defence, set off or otherwise in any legal proceedings in India and any references in this Chapter to enforcing a foreign award shall be construed as including references to relying on an award.
47. Evidence. - (1) The party applying for the enforcement of a foreign award shall, at the time of the application, produce before the court---- (a) the original award or a copy thereof, duly authenticated in the manner required by the law of the country in which it was made; (b) the original agreement for arbitration or a duly certified copy thereof; and (c) such evidence as may be necessary to prove that the award is a foreign award. (2) If the award or agreement to be produced under sub-section (1) is in a foreign language, the party seeking to enforce the award shall produce a translation into English certified as correct by a diplomatic or consular agent of the country to which that party belongs or certified as correct in such other manner as may be sufficient according to the law in force in India.
Explanation.---In this section and...