Enforcement Of CAS (Court docket Of Arbitration For Sports activities) Awards In India – Arbitration & Dispute Decision – India

What’s CAS?

With the event and exploration of sports activities actions,
numerous disputes and variations additionally cropped up, within the wake of
numerous allied pursuits concerned in such sports activities actions. This
gave rise to the necessity for dispute decision mechanisms arising in
relation to sports activities actions. On this regard, presently, the ultimate
or the apex physique for the decision of a sporting dispute is thought
because the Court docket of Arbitration for Sports activities (CAS) primarily based in Lausanne,
Switzerland. The CAS is actually an arbitration physique that additionally
gives consulting and mediation providers to its stakeholders,
notably the Worldwide Olympic Committee (IOC), Worldwide
Federations (IF), Nationwide Olympic Our bodies, Nationwide Sports activities Our bodies,
and the World Anti-Doping Company. This text endeavors to
spotlight the dispute decision mechanism adopted at CAS and the
enforceability of the award handed in proceedings of CAS in

Methods of resolving disputes in Sports activities

Sports activities dispute decision would not essentially have a set
hierarchy or methodology. Events concerned in sports activities disputes have
mainly 3 ways of resolving their disagreements –
firstly, by complaining to the interior authorities
accessible throughout the sporting federations – each nationwide and
worldwide, secondly, by instituting a writ petition or
civil or felony case in a courtroom of legislation, and, thirdly,
by various dispute decision (ADR).

Typically, a dispute could also be submitted to the CAS provided that an
arbitration settlement between the events stipulates the recourse
to the CAS. Nevertheless, based on rule 61 of the Olympic
Constitution1, all disputes in reference to the Olympic
Video games can solely be submitted to CAS, and all IF’s have
recognised the jurisdiction of CAS for at the very least some

When was CAS established? The place does it derive its authority

In 1981, IOC’s President, H.E. Juan Antonio Samaranch had
initialed the thought of making a sports-specific jurisdiction. The
following yr on the IOC Session held in Rome, IOC member H.E.
Decide Kéba Mbaye, then choose on the ICJ, The Hague, chaired
a working group tasked with getting ready the statutes of what would
rapidly develop into the “Court docket of Arbitration for

The authority of the CAS was established by the Swiss
Equestrian Case4, the place CAS was given the authority to
give arbitral awards which avoids the traditional courtroom procedures for
sports activities disputes. The aftermath of this determination led to CAS being
extra unbiased of IOC each organizationally and financially. The
largest change was the creation of “The Worldwide Council
of Arbitration for Sports activities” (ICAS) to take care of the operating
and financing of the CAS, thereby taking the place of the IOC in
the Paris Settlement in 1994.5

Enforcement of CAS awards in India

Sports activities our bodies have been recognized to adjust to awards achieved
by ADR methods. The New York Conference6
gives a needed authorized pathway for the enforcement of an
arbitral award. The home legal guidelines of varied international locations regarding
arbitration, modeled on UNCITRAL legislation7, are likely to
facilitate this course of.

The method for enforcement of the CAS Award in India is analogous
to some other International Award. The enforcement of a CAS award is a
novel idea in India. That is primarily because of the truth that
Indian disputes which were referred to CAS have been
anti-doping issues or disputes across the recognition of an NSF
(“Nationwide Sports activities Federation”) or an analogous rule

CAS awards are basically Switzerland-seated arbitral awards
enforceable underneath the New York Conference. India is a signatory to
the conference and has notified Switzerland as a reciprocating

Previous to the modification of 2015, the Supreme Court docket of India in
the circumstances of BALCO v. Kaiser Aluminium8
and World Sport Group (Mauritius) Ltd. v. MSM Satellite tv for pc
(Singapore) Pte. Ltd
.9 noticed that the Indian
Courts are tending to respect the overseas seated arbitration and
have dominated out the appliance of half I of the Arbitration and
Conciliation Act, 1996 with respect to such internationally seated
arbitral awards. Within the case of Shri Lal Mahal Ltd. v.
Progetto Grano SPA,
10 it was determined that
grounds of public coverage as relevant to the problem made to
home awards, can’t be utilized to the problem to enforcement
of overseas awards.

After the modification in 2015, the Act has restricted the ambit of
violation of public coverage for worldwide business arbitration
to solely embrace these awards which are: (i) affected by fraud or
corruption, (ii) in contravention with the elemental coverage of
Indian legislation, or (iii) in battle with the notions of morality or

Thus, the collective studying of the aforestated judgments reveals
that institutional arbitration awards reminiscent of these emanating from
the CAS are to be enforceable in India with due process.

Nevertheless, since CAS is in comparatively new type of the dispute
decision course of, among the main reforms that CAS wants are
independence, transparency, and elevated accessibility to make sure
it capabilities higher. In respect of the enforceability of overseas
awards (which incorporates CAS awards) and the appliance of public
coverage, India has had a paradigm shift from one finish of the spectrum
to its reverse finish within the area of a decade. With a rise in
the variety of CAS circumstances within the sports activities business, it will likely be
fascinating to see how CAS reforms its current functioning and the
influence it has on the Indian Arbitration regime.

CAS awards should not business (in frequent parlance) and take care of
disciplinary and administrative points of the game. Their
enforcement presents distinctive challenges in India as they aren’t
awards arising out of a relationship that’s thought-about purely
business. Having stated that, CAS arbitrations comply with the same old
levels of business arbitration, and awards are enforced within the
similar method as a business arbitral award.

Difficult a CAS Award: An uphill activity

There have additionally been situations the place Indian athletes/federations
have approached CAS in its appellate jurisdiction (which can be
Switzerland-seated) after being sad with the choice of CAS in
the primary occasion. Nevertheless, the appellate authority of CAS does
not hear the enchantment on deserves. Within the case of Amar
Muralidharan v. NADA & Ors,
11 an enchantment
made by an athlete in opposition to the award handed by CAS was dismissed by
the appellate authority of CAS, on the bottom that it didn’t have
jurisdiction to look at the deserves of the case.

An enchantment made to the choice of CAS within the first occasion could
be a floor for difficult enforcement of the award handed by CAS
(i.e., a overseas award) in India underneath Part 48 of the
Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996. Nevertheless, underneath Article
190(2) of the Swiss Federal Code on Non-public Worldwide Regulation 1987,
a choice of the CAS is handled as an arbitral award underneath the
Swiss Regulation and a closing CAS Award could be challenged within the following
circumstances solely:12

  1. If a sole arbitrator was designated irregularly or the arbitral
    tribunal was constituted irregularly.
  2. If the arbitral tribunal erroneously held that it had or did
    not have jurisdiction.
  3. If the arbitral tribunal dominated on issues past the claims
    submitted to it or did not rule on one of many claims.
  4. If the equality of the events or their proper to be heard in an
    adversarial continuing was not revered.
  5. If the award is incompatible with Swiss Public Coverage.

Due to this fact, given the restricted circumstances underneath which a CAS
award could be challenged underneath the Swiss Federal Code on Non-public
Worldwide Regulation, enforcement of a CAS award is extra more likely to be
challenged underneath the opposite provisions of Part 48 of the
Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996.


The expansion of the sports activities sector has been exponential over the
previous few years. The expansion of the business has led to a big
variety of disputes which were referred to arbitration for
decision. The majority of the business disputes within the sports activities
business ends in business arbitrations.

It is very important spotlight that CAS has gained extra
recognition in current instances. An award pronounced by the CAS is
closing and binding on the events, from the second it’s
communicated. It might particularly be enforced in accordance with
the New York Conference on the popularity and enforcement of
arbitral awards, which greater than 167 international locations have

Though it may be stated that the process for imposing overseas
awards in India is relevant for imposing CAS awards, if a extra
sure and separate process for imposing CAS Awards in India is
formulated, it might assist in the expansion of dispute decision of
sporting issues in India.


1 The Olympic Constitution, 2020.

2 Richard H. McLaren, Twenty-5 Years of the Court docket of
Arbitration for Sport: A Look within the Rear-View Mirror, 20 Marq.
Sports activities L. Rev. 305 (2010).

3 TAS-CAS, Basic Historical past of the CAS, Obtainable at: https://www.tas-cas.org/en/general-information/history-of-the-cas.html#c22

4 Gundel v. Worldwide Equestrian Federation (FEI)/CAS
[1993] 1 Civil Court docket, Swiss Fed. Tribunal.

5 Supra, Word 1.

6 United Nations Convention on Worldwide Industrial
Arbitration, Conference on the Recognition and Enforcement of
International Arbitral Awards, United Nations 1958, Obtainable at: http://www.uncitral.org/pdf/english/texts/arbitration/NY-conv/XXII_1_e.pdf

7 UNCITRAL Mannequin Regulation on Worldwide Industrial
Arbitration, 1958, Obtainable at: http://www.uncitral.org/pdf/english/texts/arbitration/ml-arb/07-86998_Ebook.pdf

8 Bharat Aluminium Firm and Ors. v. Kaiser Aluminium
2012 (3) ArbLR 515 (SC)

9 World Sport Group (Mauritius) Ltd. v. MSM Satellite tv for pc
(Singapore) Pte. Ltd. AIR2014SC968

10 Shri Lal Mahal Ltd. v. Progetto Grano SPA 2013 (8)

11 Amar Muralidharan v. NADA, Nationwide Dope Testing
Laboratory, Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports activities,

12 Michael Beloff QC & Dr. Stephan Netzle, The Court docket
of Arbitration for Sport, Sport: Regulation and Follow, (eds. Adam Lewis
and Jonathan Taylor), Tottel Publishing.

13 Scope of an award pronounced by the CAS Obtainable at:

The content material of this text is meant to supply a common
information to the subject material. Specialist recommendation must be sought
about your particular circumstances.