Hardship & Substituted Performance as Defences Against Specific Performance: Critique of the Recent Developments
31 National Law School of India Review 53-71, 2019
19 Pages Posted: 28 Dec 2019
Date Written: November 21, 2018
For a long time, contract law in India has been regarded as being plagued with inefficient contract enforcement mechanisms. The consequence has been that projects remained incomplete for several years, thereby increasing project completion costs and fostering litigation. All these factors have resulted in a weak regime on contract enforcement. To address these deficiencies, the Government constituted an expert committee and based on the recommendations of the said Committee, introduced amendments to the Specific Relief Act, 1963 which are now in force. The amended provisions enable the promisee obtain specific performance irrespective of legitimate situations where it is not possible for the promisor to perform or where substitutes are reasonably available. This paper argues that such a legal position will lead to unjust results for the promisors/contractors and that judicial interpretation should take into account their legitimate interests.
Keywords: Specific Relief (Amendment) Act 2018, Contract Law, Specific Relief, Damages, Indian Contract Act 1872
JEL Classification: K1, K4, K12, K19
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation