RGNUL SAM CONCLAVE ON ARBITRATION IN PRACTICE
The Editorial Board of RGNUL Financial and Mercantile Law Review (RFMLR) virtually organised the RGNUL-SAM Conclave on Arbitration in Practice, 2021 in collaboration with Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co. (SAM & Co.) on July 17 & 18, 2021. The Conclave consisted of two sessions: A Paper Presentation and an Expert Panel Discussion. The event was organized with the support of the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC) as an Associate Partner and Bar & Bench as the Media Partner.
SAM & Co., one of India’s marquee law firms, is known for delivering original and exceptional solutions in the fields of mergers & acquisitions, tax, competition law, capital markets, private equity practices, dispute resolution and arbitration, and regulatory litigation. The firm is recognised as one of the leading law firms in India for international and domestic arbitration and has a specialised Arbitration Practice Group consisting of members with extensive experience and expertise in handling all phases of complex commercial and treaty arbitrations.
SIAC is an independent, not-for-profit organisation established in 1991 and has a track record for providing best in class arbitration services to the global business community. As a global arbitral institution, it provides cost-competitive and efficient case management services to parties from all over the world.
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With the advent of arbitration being adopted as the preferred method of dispute resolution around the world, the conclave was widely acclaimed and was extremely successful in initiating a discourse on contemporary issues of the practical aspects of arbitration in India. Through the paper presentation session, various participants researched upon and presented novel and innovative solutions to issues faced by all the stakeholders. The discussion brought together leading arbitration experts from SAM & Co., and other working professionals in the field of arbitration who shared practical insights into the evolving opportunities and persisting hurdles likely to shape arbitration in the coming years.
For the Paper Presentation, the Editorial Board had invited submissions from law students, academicians, working professionals, and research scholars within and outside India, which aimed at addressing issues specifically related to practical aspects of arbitration, through an exhaustive list of sub-themes. Research proposals were also allowed to be submitted by individuals interested in writing on issues beyond the given sub-themes but falling within the ambit of the larger debate. Entries were then shortlisted and the authors were invited to present their research to our panel of experts who judged these entries.
Among all the papers presented during the Paper Presentation Session on July 17, first position was secured by Naman Devpura (Student, Gujarat National Law University, Gandhinagar) who presented on the topic “Third-Party Funding in Arbitration: International Landscape and the Road Ahead for India.” The second position was secured by Vivek Krishnani and Rajat Sinha (Students, National Law University, Jodhpur) whose paper was titled, “Conflicts of Interest Planted by Parties for Derailing Arbitral Proceedings”. Finally, the third position was secured by Balapragatha Moorthy and Shreyas Kafle (Students, Jindal Global Law School, Sonipat) for their discussion on "Assessing the Prospects of Ad-Valorem Charges to Curb Inflated and Frivolous Claims in Arbitration".
The author of the top entry has been rewarded with an internship at SAM & Co. along with a cash prize of Rs. 10,000. Further, the authors of the second best entry have also been rewarded with an internship at SAM & Co. and free passes to SIAC's South East Academy to be held on 29-30 July 2021. Last but not least, the authors of the third best entry have been rewarded with free passes to SIAC's South East Academy to be held on 29-30 July 2021. Additionally, after a comprehensive review of the papers shortlisted for presentation, the Editorial Board will be publishing the compilation of the best entries.
Expert Panel Discussion
An Expert Panel Discussion was also organised by the Editorial Board virtually on the Cisco WebEx platform on July 18. The panel of speakers consisted of Mr. Tejas Karia (Partner, Head – Arbitration, SAM & Co.), Mr. Gauhar Mirza (Partner, SAM & Co.), Mr. Kevin Nash (Deputy Registrar, SIAC), Mr. Rohit Singhal (Chief Executive Officer and Construction Dispute Expert, Masin). The discussion was moderated by Mr. Prakhar Deep (Senior Associate, SAM & Co.).
Through this discussion, the experts addressed crucial and salient issues pertaining to practical aspects of arbitration in India and shed some light on points such as expert witnesses, selection of arbitrators, delays in adjudication, court intervention, and inflation of claims. The session was attended by students and professionals from across the country and furnished a platform for the attendees to interact with the experts in the field. The experts in the panel discussion addressed those questions pertaining to practical aspects which are generally left unaddressed. Hence, through the Expert Panel Discussion, the conclave was concluded on a very insightful note.