Monday, February 27, 2012

E-Courts And ODR In India

Electronic courts (e-courts) and online dispute resolution (ODR) are two most important uses of technology for dispute resolution and adjudicating of cases. However, India has been slow on both these fronts. For instance, till the end of February 2012, we are still waiting for the establishment of first e-court in India. This is so because India lacks techno legal expertise for establishment of e-courts.

Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) is the exclusive techno legal segment of ICT law firm Perry4Law and it is managing the exclusive techno legal e-courts training and consultancy centre of India. It is clear that establishment of e-courts in India must be expedited.

Similarly, on the front of online dispute resolution (ODR) in India as well, we have performed not well. Although traditional alternative dispute resolution (ADR) services in India have witnessed some growth in India yet ODR is still waiting for a beginning in India. ADR and ODR in India need to be streamlined to give impetus to alternative dispute resolution mechanisms in India. Further, PTLB is the exclusive techno legal ODR services provider in India.
Online dispute resolution (ODR) and international response is still lukewarm but at least a beginning has been made there. While international online dispute resolution regime has started exploring use of ICT for disputes resolution, online dispute resolution in Asia is still growing. Online dispute resolution in Asian countries is largely confined to a single or two countries that also to a limited extent. Clearly online dispute resolution standards of practice for India and Asia need to be developed urgently.

Online commercial arbitration in India also needs to be developed. Similarly, legal issues of media and entertainment industry of India have assumed tremendous importance. Entertainment and media industry dispute resolution in India can be resolved using online dispute resolution. Dispute prevention and resolution in the film and media industry in India is presently not exploring use of online dispute resolution.

Similarly, ODR and cross border e-commerce transactions and dispute resolution of cross border technology transactions are also interrelated. Dispute resolution in technology transactions is the upcoming trend in the field of ODR. Dispute resolution of cross border technology transactions is a complicated process if we adopt traditional litigation methods to resolve them. Dispute resolution in technology transactions and dealings requires an effective, timely and cost effective mechanism. Traditional litigation is definitely not the place to achieve these objectives.

There is an urgent need to adequately use information technology for streamlining the judicial system of India. Presently, the efforts in this regard are not satisfactory at all. Let us hope that by the end of this year; at least the Indian government would start thinking in this direction.