Hon'ble Chief Justice, Supreme Court of India, New Delhi

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SAVE  NATIONAL GREEN TRIBUNAL

 

THE CHIEF JUSTICE

SUPREME COURT OF INDIA

NEW DELHI

 

Sir,

 

We humbly request you to please save the Nation Green Tribunal (NGT) by declaring Tribunal, Appellate Tribunal and other Authorities (Qualifications, Experience and other Conditions of Service of Members) Rules, 2017 AS UTRA-VIRES AND VOID. (Tribunal Rules 2017)

ON THE GROUNDS THAT

1.     An Act of Law established through approvals of Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha, State Assemblies and the Consented by the President of India can only be amended through the same process.

2.     Rules notified by Department of Revenue. Using Section 184 of Finance Act 2017, cannot supersede and AMEND a Law through

3.     Tribunal Rules 2017 insert Clause 10A in the NGT Act and thus amend the NGT Act both in Law and Spirit/

"10A. Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, the qualifications, appointment, term of office, salaries and allowances, resignation, removal and other terms and conditions of service of the Chairperson, Judicial Member and Expert Member of the Tribunal appointed after the commencement of Part XIV of Chapter VI of the Finance Act, 2017, shall be governed by the provisions of section 184 of that Act: Provided that the Chairperson, Judicial Member and Expert Member appointed before the commencement of Part XIV of Chapter VI of the Finance Act, 2017, shall continue to be governed by the provisions of this Act, and the rules made thereunder as if the provisions of section 184 of the Finance Act, 2017 had not come into force.".

4.     The NGT Act required Chairperson of NGT to be or had been a Judge of Supreme Court of India or a Chief Justice of a High Court.  Now a person who is ‘qualified to be a Judge of Supreme Court” can be appointed as Chairperson.  A Lawyer who has practiced for 10 Years in a High Court can thus become a Chairperson even though in 10 Years he/she may have just appeared in 10 Cases – one each year – and lost all of them. (Article 124 of Constitution)

5.     NGT’s mandate is to deal with all Environment Issues that are adjudicated to be part of a Fundamental Right, i.e., Right to Life.  Enforcement of this Right and Protection of Fundamental Right to Life just cannot be left any one except the Judges, who have had serious experience in Adjudication and Dispensing Justice.

6.     Similarly, an Expert Member required per NGT Act to have a Degree in Master of Science with a Doctorate or Master of Technology is being replaced by a person who has a degree/post graduate degree in Science and has 20 years in the relevant field including five years’ practical experience in the field of environment and forest etc.  Thus, a Forest Range Officer (FRO) - nothing against anyone personally or as a class - can become an Expert Member first and then Chairperson since an FRO has a Degree, mostly in Science, has twenty years experience including five years in the field say in a Tiger Reserve that is a National Level Institution.  Do we want that to happen ?

7.     All Tribunals and Commissions and Appellate Authorities perform Judicial Function and these cannot be left to people, may be experts in their fields, but not necessarily good, able and impartial adjudicators with a judicial temperament capable of rendering decisions which have to (i) inform the parties about the reasons for the decision; (ii) demonstrate fairness and correctness of the decision and absence of arbitrariness; and (iii) ensure that justice is only done but seem to be done.

8.     The New Rules are against the Basis Structure of Constitution. Independence of the Judiciary has always been recognised as a part of the basic structure of the Constitution.

9.     Supreme Court has passed many Judgments that are being violated by these Rules.

Request these Rules declared Void and directions issued that the Act of Law be amended as per the Procedure Laid Down.

Ordinary Citizens of India

Anand Arya

 

 



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