New Delhi: Civil disputes in the family and
matrimonial disputes can be better settled through mediation
instead of fighting prolonged legal battles which would only
ruin the litigants, the Supreme Court has counselled.
A bench of justices Markandeya Katju and Gyan Sudha
Mishra in an order quoting Mahatma Gandhi`s book "My
Experiments with Truth" asked lawyers to advise the clients to
go in for mediation, instead of fighting protracted battles
involving huge expenditure.
Mediation is an alternative dispute mechanisim where a
mediator works out a compromise between the disputing parties.
"This is a dispute between brothers. In our opinion,
an effort should be made to resolve the dispute between the
parties by mediation.
"In our opinion, the lawyers should advise their
clients to try for mediation for resolving the disputes,
especially where relationships, like family relationships,
business relationships, are involved otherwise, the litigation
drags on for years and decades often ruining both the parties.
"Hence,the lawyers as well as litigants should follow
Mahatma Gandhi`s advice in the matter and try for
arbitration/mediation. This is also the purpose of Section 89
of the Code of Civil Procedure," the apex court said in an
The apex court bench quoted Mahatama Gandhi`s anguish
as a lawyer wherein he said "a large part of my time during
the twenty years of my practice as a lawyer was occupied in
bringing about private compromises of hundreds of cases. I
lost nothing thereby--not even money, certainly not my soul."
The apex court passed the order while disposing of a
property dispute between BS Krishnamurthy and BS Nagaraj
"Let the matter be referred to the Bangalore Mediation
Centre. The parties are directed to appear before the
Bangalore Mediation Centre on 21.02.2011", the bench said
while disposing off the case.