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Letters to the Editor: 26 January, 2020

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letters to the editor, afternoon voice,

Court-appointed arbitrators should be regulated to avoid tactics of

It is a normal process that retired judges of higher courts are appointed as arbitrators by Courts giving them a chance to earn more income than they earn while being judges in higher courts.

There are reports that these arbitrators charge exorbitantly for each hearing. Even if all the concerned parties mutually agree for adjournment much before date of hearing, arbitrators insist on sending representation for adjournment on fixed date of hearing so that they may forcibly charge for a hearing held just for seeking adjournment.

An RTI response dated 24.12.2019 from the Department of Legal Affairs has revealed that central government is not considering any reforms to prevent such anti-public practice of arbitrators.

The Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996 should be amended to prevent such money-minting tactics of arbitrators. Complete details of arbitration-fees earned by an arbitrator case-wise in a year mentioning also number of hearings conducted in each case should be made public by putting all details on websites of Courts that have appointed them as arbitrators. There must be some maximum reasonable amount fixed for an arbitrator for a particular case. Money earned by way of arbitration must not exceed what arbitrators earned before retirement.

However, maximum time limit for withholding arbitration-award after completion of hearing has recently been fixed as one year (except for international awards) by amending the Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996 where earlier there was no such limit. But even one-year period for arbitration-award is too much which should be maximum three months.

Madhu Agrawal

Nirbhaya’s mother turns down Indira Jaisingh plea

The mother of Nirbhaya has turned down the plea of Senior Advocate Indira Jaisingh to forgive the convicts of rape-cum-murder of her daughter. In a reply the mother of Nirbhaya said that she does not have a big heart like Sonia Gandhi who pleaded for the mercy of the killers of her husband Rajiv Gandhi.

Here, the big question arises how and why Congress leaders including leading lawyers in the party at that time did not utilise legal skill to save Nathuram Vinayak Godse who became the first-ever hanged victim in free India that too at a young age of just 39 years. Evidently, all such legal loopholes to defer hanging were available then too. Even former Delhi Congress Chief Sushil Sharma is now free after completing formality of a life sentence though he mercilessly burnt pieces of his murdered wife in a Tandoor of Ashoka Yatri Niwas in New Delhi.

It was Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru and other Congress leaders who turned down mercy-pleas of two sons of MK Gandhi namely Manilal Gandhi and Ramdas Gandhi for Nathuram Godse whose patriotism and nationalism cannot be doubted even though killing of any person cannot be justified.

Justice GD Khosla hearing the appeal of Nathuram Godse revealed that the convict repented of his deed and desired to spend the rest of his life in promotion of peace and service of the country if he was given mercy.

Subhash Chandra Agrawal

Indian film makers distort history for controversy

No single nomination for Indian films at the Oscars comes as a surprise because our filmmakers concentrate on ‘masala entertainment’ than on real content that is appreciated on global platforms. Most films made in India are purposefully made controversial with distorted history for free publicity. This is the reason why they are ignored on the global platform. Good films with great content may not be box office hits and producers in India want to make films which earn over Rs.100 crores in a couple of weeks which means that we have become business-centric and in the process get farther from reality as well as art.

The govt. needs to encourage low budget films with history and art in their content which when produced at a low cost has no burden to resort to distortion to earn crores in a short time. Films should be close to reality and it is not necessary for them to be shot at exorbitant locations to be appreciated by the masses. Regional films hardly have any audience and tax cuts as well as other benefits should be offered to them for survival as they are the ones which can win you Oscars as well as international recognition which is so very important than the ‘masala films’ which though they do great business but are forgotten in a couple of weeks.


(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)

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