Bill providing for setting up commercial courts at district level gets nod of Parliament

Bill providing for setting up commercial courts at district level gets nod of Parliament

Agency News

New Delhi, Aug 10 : A Bill providing for the setting up of commercial courts at the district level on Friday got the nod of Parliament, with the Rajya Sabha passing it by a voice vote.

The Commercial Courts, Division and Appellate Division of High Courts (Amendment) Bill, 2018 was moved for consideration of the House by Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad.

Replying to a discussion on the Bill in the House, Mr Prasad said efforts had been made to include disputes involving Rs three lakh, as against Rs five lakh earlier.

He said dispute redressal mechanism had been set up by initially sending these disputes for mediation at centres and settlement within three months' time.

The Bill was later passed by the voice vote. With the passage of the Rajya Sabha, the Bill, which has already been passed by the Lok Sabha, has got the nod of Parliament. Earlier, participating in a debate on the Bill, Bhubaneswar Kalita of the Congress, while supporting it, however, opposed bringing in the Bill through ordinance route.

As FDI was coming in, there was a need to have courts for financial disputes, he averred. On reduction in value from Rs five lakh to Rs three lakh, the Congress member expressed apprehension on courts being flooded with litigation and further overburdening them.

Harshvardhan Singh Dungarpur of BJP approved the legislation, saying it would create a positive image among the investors and improve India's Ease of Doing Business ranking.

The Bill amends the Commercial Courts Act, 2015, which provides for commercial courts and commercial divisions of High Courts to adjudicate commercial disputes with a value of at least Rs. 1 crore. The Bill reduces this limit to Rs three lakh.

The Bill allows state governments to establish commercial courts at the district level, even in territories where High Courts have ordinary original civil jurisdiction.

In areas, where High Courts do not have original jurisdiction, the state governments may set up commercial appellate courts at the district level to consider appeals from commercial courts below the level of a district judge. (UNI)