Mediation is a form of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Technique in which the two disputing parties appoint a neutral third party to help them resolve the issue. Parties can be referred to a mediator by the court under Section 89 of the Civil Procedure Code.
There is no law regarding mediation in India but it has been held in court that the proceedings of mediation are confidential (Moti Ram (D) Tr. LRs and Anr. Vs. Ashok Kumar and Anr,) but the decision is not binding on the parties.
In a Mediation, the ultimate decision of deciding the issue always lies with the parties. This is an essential element as it results in a settlement which is acceptable to both the parties. The main purpose of the mediator is to facilitate the parties in arriving at a decision and cannot force a decision on the parties which is unacceptable to them. He or she facilitates the interaction between the parties, helps them communicate with one another and handles any interruption that may occur.
Any settlement reached in a case that is referred to mediation during the course of litigation is required to be reduced to writing, and signed by the concerned parties and filed in Court for the passing of an appropriate order.
The advantages of mediation include lesser costs, the smaller timescale for settlement, the flexibility of procedure, control over the end decision, confidentiality, face to face interactions with the other party, informal process amongst other things.
Under the Indian law, contractual dispute (including money claims), similar disputes arising from strained relationships (from matrimonial to partnership), disputes which need a continuity of relationship (neighbours easement rights) and consumer disputes, have been held to be most suited for mediation.
By- Diksha Manhas