[Excerpt] The recent tragic incident at the Union Carbide Plant in Bhopal, India has focused international attention on some of the problems of industrialization in developing countries. Of particular interest has been the issue of whether the cases filed against Union Carbide should be tried in Indian or American courts. Disputes of this nature indicate the increasing necessity for world-wide comprehension of the laws and regulations governing industry in developing countries, particularly for the developed economies that invest in countries with developing economies.
India is one example of a developing economy that has recently opened its doors to international investment. Following the November 1984 election of Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, considerable incentives have been given to attract foreign investors into the country. Consequently, there have been a plethora of technical collaborations, including foreign investment in plant and machinery for large factories. It has therefore become important, especially for potential investors outside India, to have a basic understanding of Indian industrial law.
This article highlights the legal and practical aspects of industrial dispute resolution in India, to help potential investors analyze how industrial disputes between employers and employees are actually resolved.