The Union Government on Thursday notified the Tribunal Rules, 2021, related to the conditions of service.
It said, “Save as provided in these rules, they shall come into force on the date of their publication in the Official Gazette.”
The Central government said tonight, “In exercise of the powers conferred by Section 3 of the Tribunal Reforms Act, 2021 (33 of 2021) and in supersession of the Tribunal, Appellate Tribunal and other Authorities (Qualifications, Experience and other Conditions of Service of Members) Rules, 2020”, the rules have been made.
The Rules prescribe the qualifications for appointment to various tribunals, their salaries, allowances, procedure for resignation, leave, pension etc.
The Rules prescribe qualifications required for Chairman/Members of:
Administrative Tribunal Act, 1985 ,
Industrial Tribunal ,
Income-tax Appellate Tribunal ,
Customs, Excise and Service Tax Appellate Tribunal ,
Appellate Tribunal under the Smugglers and Foreign Exchange Manipulators (Forfeiture of Property) Act, 1976 ,
Railway Claims Tribunal ,
Securities Appellate Tribunal under the Securities Exchange Board of India Act, 1992 ,
Debts Recovery Tribunal under the Recovery of Debts Due to Banks and Financial Institutions Act, 1993 ,
Debts Recovery Appellate Tribunal under the Recovery of Debts Due to Banks and Financial Institutions Act, 1993 (51 of 1993),
Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal under the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India Act, 1997 ,
National Company Law Appellate Tribunal under the Companies Act, 2013 ,
National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission under the Consumer Protection Act, 2019 ,
Appellate Tribunal for Electricity under the Electricity Act, 2003 ,
Armed Forces Tribunal under the Armed Forces Act, 2007 ,
National Green Tribunal under the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010.
As per the Rules, the chairperson, except for the presiding officer of Debts Recovery Tribunal and presiding officer of the Industrial Tribunal, shall be paid a salary of Rs 2.5 lakh per month.
A member of the tribunal shall be paid a salary of Rs 2.25 lakh per month.
A presiding officer of the Debts Recovery Tribunal or a presiding officer of the Industrial Tribunal constituted by the Central Government shall be paid a salary in the pay level of Rs 1.44 lakh – 2.18 lakh.
Earlier, the Apex Court had also expressed its displeasure for passing the Tribunals Reforms Act.
With the Supreme Court mentioning the removal order as ‘awkward’, the Union government agreed to allow Justice Ashok Iqbal Singh (AIS) Cheema to continue as acting chairperson of the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) until 20 September 2021.
On July 14, 2021, the Supreme Court struck down the newly-inserted Section 184 of the Finance Act, 2017 as amended by the Tribunal Reforms (Rationalisation and Conditions of Service) Ordinance, 2021 to the extent that it fixed the tenure of members and chairpersons of tribunals at four years.
Around 250 posts are lying vacant at various key tribunals, such as National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), Debt Recovery Tribunal (DRT), Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) and Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT).
On August 13, 2021, the Tribunal Reforms Bill was passed in Parliament. On August 16, the Top Court termed the passing of the bill as ‘serious issue’.