After the amendment of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996 in 2015, the Saikrishna Committee Report recommended further amendments on the back of the 2015 amendments.
Consequently, the Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act 2019 has been passed. One of the outstanding feature of Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act, 2019 is the establishment of an independent body namely the Arbitration Council of India.
In addition to Arbitration, the Supreme Court, in the case of Afcons Infrastructure Ltd v. Cherian Varkey Construction Co. (P) Ltd,(2010) 8 SCC 24 observed that that all cases relating to trade, commerce, contracts, consumer disputes and even tortious liability could normally be mediated. Following the same, the 2018 amendment to the Commercial Courts Act 2015 (Section 12A), made it mandatory for parties to exhaust the remedy of pre-institution mediation under the Act before instituting a suit. The Commercial Courts (Pre-Institution Mediation and Settlement) Rules 2018 (the PIMS Rules) have been framed by the government.
Thereafter in the matter of MR Krishna Murthi v. New India Assurance Co. Ltd., [2019 SCC OnLine SC 315] the Supreme Court, asked the government to consider the feasibility of enacting an Indian Mediation Act to take care of various aspects of mediation in general.