The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has approved the Commercial Courts, Commercial Division and Commercial Appellate Division of High Courts (Amendment) Bill, 2018 for introduction in the Parliament.
The Bill seeks to achieve the following objectives:
With the rapid economic development, there has been considerable increase in commercial activities and consequent steep rise in number of commercial disputes at domestic and international level. Increase of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and overseas commercial transactions have further contributed to a significant increase of commercial disputes.
With a view to address the issue faster resolution of matters relating to commercial disputes and to create a positive image particularly among the foreign investors about the independent and responsive Indian legal system, the Commercial Courts, Commercial Division and Commercial Appellate Division of High Courts Act, 2015 was enacted and commercial courts were established at district levels in all jurisdictions, except in the territories over which the high courts have original ordinary civil jurisdiction. These five high courts i.e. the high courts of Bombay, Delhi, Calcutta, Madras and of Himachal Pradesh, exercise ordinary original civil jurisdiction in regard to territories of cities of Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai and the territory of the State of Himachal Pradesh, respectively. In such territories of these high courts as per proviso to sub-section (1) of Section 3, there are no commercial courts at district level and instead commercial divisions have been constituted in each of these high courts. The specified value of such commercial disputes to be adjudicated by the commercial courts or the commercial division of high court, as the case may be is presently Rs. 1 crore.