Thursday, 17 May 2012

Press Note:  18-05-2012

Govt. of India must fill the vacant posts in NGT
before 15th September, 2012
“NGT functions impact entire country, from North to South and East to West”.

Ref: Case in Supreme Court of India: - Union of India vs. Vimal Bhai & others
AdvocatesSanjay Parikh, Ritwick Dutta, Rahul Choudhary, Anitha Shenoy are appearing before theSupreme Court on behalf of Vimal Bhai & others.

On 03/05/2012, in the case of Union of India vs. Vimal Bhai & others, Hon'ble Mr. Justice G.S. Singvi and Hon'ble Mr. Justice Sudhansu Jyoti Mukhopadhaya directed the UOI to fill the vacant posts of Judicial and Expert members in the National Green Tribunal (NGT).

The hearing went on for three days.
On the second day, the court summoned the Secretary (Ministry of Environment and Forests). On the third day, i.e., 5th May 2012, he (Secretary) was present in the Court. Solicitor General informed the court that six Expert Members and four Judicial Members will be appointed by 31.10.2012. But the court was not satisfied. 

The Court was annoyed that many members of political parties, public representatives, Government officers and others were retaining their government houses, even after the expiry of the tenure of lease or retirement from service.

Justice G.S. Singvi said in the court and also wrote in the order too that the National Green Tribunal is an important statutory Tribunal, the functions of which are going to impact the entire country from North to South and East to West.

Counsel of the respondent Shri Sanjay Parikh, submitted that the members of the National Green Tribunal may be given suitable accommodation and the concerned Ministry be directed to issue necessary allotment letters and if the suitable accommodation is not available, then the members may be given the House Rent Allowance at par with the members of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Appellate Tribunal.

Hon'ble Supreme Court issues directions: (as mentioned in the order)

  1. The process for appointment of the Chairperson of the Tribunal must be completed in all respects by 15.09.2012 and appointment be made on or before that date.

  2. Six Expert Members and four Judicial Members shall also be appointed on or before 15.09.2012.

 3. Within seven days from receipt of a copy of this order, the Registrar General of the Delhi High Court shall put up the request sent by the National Green Tribunal for deputing an officer of the Superior Judicial Service to function as Registrar of the Tribunal before the Chief Justice.
The High Court is requested to spare the services of a suitable officer, keeping in view the provisions of the National Green Tribunal Rules, for working as Registrar on deputation for a minimum period of one year. It is expected thatnecessary action in this regard will be taken within 15 days of the receipt of copy of this order.

4. The Acting Chairperson of the National Green Tribunal shall issue directions for initiation of the process for recruitment of staff for filling up the 95 vacantposts. However, the appointment orders be issued only after the Chairperson takes over.

5. The Ministry of Urban Development and Housing, Government of India, shall, within a period of eight weeks from today, furnish a complete list of the houses/flats and other accommodations being kept by political parties, public representatives, Government officers and others after expiry of the tenure  of lease or retirement from service, as the case may be.

6. After the Faridkot House is vacated by the National Human Rights Commission, the same shall be allotted and possession thereof be handed over to the National Green Tribunal. The Ministry of Urban Development and Housing shall issue an order to this effect within a period of 15 days from the date of receipt of a copy of this order.   
The Secretary, Ministry of Environment shall forward a copy of this order to the Ministry of Urban Development and Housing for the purpose of taking necessary action.

7. If any portion of Faridkot House is proposed to be or has been allotted to any other organization,  the Ministry of Urban Development  and Housing shallwithdraw the communication and allot alternative space to the concerned organization, as soon as possible.

8. If suitable accommodation is available for allotment to the members of the National Green Tribunal, then the Ministry of Urban Development and Housing, Government of India shall issue necessary order for allotment of said accommodation.

Court also expected that various Ministries of the Government of India will coordinate with each other and ensure that the directions contained in this order are implemented without delay.

To speed up the process court has directed the Registry to fax the order to concerned ministries and also to Delhi High court. Matter will be listed on 11.07.2012.

(Who was present in the Court)

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