Alerts & Updates 12th Jul 2019

ELP- Arbitration weekly update- ONGC Petro Additions Limited v. Tecnimont S.P.A. Anr

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This week, we analyze a recent judgment of the Delhi High Court in ONGC Petro Additions Limited v. Tecnimont S.P.A. & Anr.

  • In an arbitration between ONGC Petro Additions Limited (“ONGC”) and Tecnimont S.P.A.; Anr. (“Tecnimont”), ONGC sought the leave of the tribunal to file additional documents after the time period for completion of pleadings and production of documents had expired. ONGC filed an application under section 19 of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 (“the Act”) for placing additional documents and evidence on record.

    The arbitral tribunal passed an order (“Order”) rejecting the application filed by ONGC. Aggrieved by the Order, ONGC filed a petition before the Delhi High Court (“Court”) under section 34 of the Act to set aside the Order. The issue which arose for determination before the Court was whether the Order constituted an “interim award” under section 2(1) (c) of the Act and was therefore amenable to challenge under section 34 of the Act.

    The Court inter alia observed that the (i) Order was a procedural order made by the tribunal; (ii) the Order was not ‘final’ as it did not conclusively decide an ‘issue’ in the arbitration proceedings; and (iii) the Act does not allow a challenge to a procedural order passed by the arbitral tribunal. Thus, the Court held that the Order does not qualify as an ‘interim award’ under the Act and was therefore not amenable to challenge under section 34 of the Act.
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