Chief Justice of India-designate Justice SA Bobde has called for making pre-litigation mediation a must for commercial disputes. And, in a break from the past, he has also supported the idea of creating a national judicial service.
As per sources, Justice Bobde in an interview said, “All (commercial) matters could be made to first go through pre-litigation mediation. So if there is a commercial problem or dispute between two businesses, they could first undergo pre-litigation mediation. If it cannot be solved, then they can approach the courts.”
The CJI-designate felt Parliament should consider enacting legislation to give mediation a status of the decree. “Parliament will have to legislate. There is already a provision in the Lok Adalat Act where a settlement before a Lok Adalat is enforceable as a decree of the court. This agreement between the two parties arrived at the stage of pre-mediation litigation could have a force of a decree.”
Justice Bobde came out in support of the proposal to have an all-India judicial service. “I think a National Judicial Service is a good idea… there will be a need for a specialised academy for training judges who would serve throughout the country.”