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THE NATIONAL ENVIRONMENT TRIBUNAL ACT 1995

Title : THE NATIONAL ENVIRONMENT TRIBUNAL ACT 1995

Year : 1995



The Central Government shall, by notification, establish a Tribunal, to be known as the National Environment Tribunal, to exercise the jurisdiction, powers and authority Conferred on it by or under this Act.



(1) The Tribunal shall consist of a Chairperson and such number of Vice-Chairpersons, Judicial Members and Technical Members as the Central Government may deem fit and, subject to the other provisions if this Act, the jurisdiction, powers and authority of the Tribunal may be exercised by Benches thereof.

(2) Subject to the other provisions of this Act, a Bench shall consist of one Judicial Member and one Technical Member.

(3) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1), the
Chairperson-

(a) May, in addition to discharging the functions of the Judicial Member of the Technical Member of the Bench to which he is appointed, discharge the functions of the Judicial Member or, as the case may be, the Technical Member, of any other Bench;

(b) May transfer the Vice-Chairperson or other Member from one Bench to another Bench;

(c) May authorise the Vice-Chairperson or the Judicial Member or the Technical Member appointed to one Bench to discharge also the functions of the Vice-Chairperson or, as the case may be, the Judicial Member or the Technical Member of another Bench; and

(d) May, for the purpose of securing that any case or cases which, having regard to the nature of the questions involved, requires or require, hi his opinion or under the rules made by the Central Government in this behalf, to be decided by a Bench composed of more than two Members issue such general or special orders, as he may deem fit:

Provided that every Bench constituted in pursuance of this clause shall include at least one Judicial Member and one Technical Member.

(4) Notwithstanding anything contained in the foregoing provisions of this section, it shall be competent for the Chairperson or any other Member authorised by the Chairperson in this behalf to function as a Bench consisting of a single Member and exercise the jurisdiction, powers and authority of the Tribunal in respect of such classes of cases or such matters pertaining to such classes, of cases as the Chairperson may, by general or special order, specify:

Provided that if at any stage of the hearing of any such case or matter, it appears to the Chairperson or such Member that the case or matter is of such a nature that, it ought to be, heard by a Bench consisting of two Members, the case or matter may be transferred by the Chairperson or, as the, case pay be referred to him for transfer to such Bench as the Chairperson may deem fit.

(5) Subject to the other provisions of this Act, the Benches of the Tribunal shall ordinarily sit at New Delhi (which shall be known as the principal Bench) and at such other places as the Central
Government may, by notification, specify.



(1) A person shall not be qualified for appointment as the Chair person unless he.-

(a) Is, or has been, a Judge of the Supreme Court or a High
Court; or

(b) Has, for at last two year", held the office of Vice-Chairperson.

(2) A person shell not be qualified for appointment as the Vice-
Chairperson unless he-

(a) Is, or has been, a Judge of a High Court; or

(b) Has, for at least two years, held the post of a Secretary to the Government of India or any other post under the Central or a State Government carrying a scale of pay which is not less then that of a Secretary to the Government of India; or

(c) (i) Has, for at least five years, held the post of an Additional Secretary to the Government of India or any other post under the Central or a State Government carrying a scale of pay which is not less than that of an Additional Secretary to the Government of India; and

(ii) Has adequate, knowledge of, or experience in, legal, admini -strative, scientific or technical aspects of the problems relating to environment; or

(d) Has for at least three years, held office as a Judicial Member or a Technical Member,

(3) A person shall not be qualified for appointment as a Judicial Member unless he-

(a) Is, or has been, or is qualified to be, a Judge of a High Court;or

(b) Has been a member of the Indian Legal Service and has held a post in grade I of that Service for at least three years.

(4) A person shall not be qualified for appointment as a Technical Member unless he has adequate knowledge of, or experience in, or capacity to deal with, administrative, scientific or technical aspects of the problems relating to environment.

(5) Subject to the provisions of subsections (6) and (7), the Chair -person, Vice-Chairperson and every other Member of the Tribunal shall be appointed by the President.

(6) No appointment of a person possessing the qualifications specified in this section as the Chairperson or the Vice-Chairperson shall be made except after consultation with the Chief Justice of
India.

(7) No appointment of a person as a Judicial Member or a Technical Member shall be made except on the recommendation of a Select -ion Committee appointed by the Central Government consisting of the following, namely:-

(a) Chairperson of the Tribu- Chairperson of the Committee, exnal. officio;

(b) Secretary to the Govern- member, ex Officio;ment of India in the Ministry of Environment and Forests

(c) Secretary to the Govern- member, ex Officio;ment of India in the Ministry of Law, justice and company Affairs (Department of Legal Affairs)

(d) Director-General, Council member, ex officio;of Scientific and Industrial Research.

(e) An Environmentalist to be member.nominated by the central
Government



(1) In the event of the occurrence of any vacancy in the office of the Chairperson by reason of his death, resignation or otherwise, the Vice-Chairperson or, as the case may be, such one of the Vice-Chairpersons as the Central Government may, by notification, authorise in this behalf, shall act as the Chairperson until the date on which a new Chairperson, appointed in accordance with the provisions of this Act to fill such vacancy, enters upon his office.

(2) When the Chairperson is unable to discharge his functions owing to absence, illness of any other cause, the Vice-Chairperson or, as the case may be, such one of the Vice-Chairpersons, as the Central Government may, by notification, authorise in this behalf, shall discharge the functions of the Chairperson until the date on which the Chairperson resumes his duties.



The Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson and other Member shall hold office as such for a term of five years from the date on which he enters upon his office, but shall be eligible for re-appointment for another term of five years:

Provided that no Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson or other Member shall hold office as such after he has attained,-

(a) In the case of the Chairperson, the age of seventy years;

(b) In the case of the Vice-Chairperson, the age of sixty-five years; and

(c) In the case of any other Member, the age of sixty-two years.




(1) The Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson or other Member may, by notice in writing under his hand addressed to the President, resign his office:

Provided that the Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson or other Member shall unless he is permitted by the President to relinquish his office sooner, continue to hold office until the expiry of three months from the date of receipt of such notice or until a person duly appointed as his successor enters upon his office or until the expiry of his term of office, whichever is the earliest.

(2) The Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson or any other Member shall not be removed from his office except , by an order made by the
President on, the ground of proved misbehaviour or incapacity after an inquiry made by a Judge of the Supreme Court in which such
Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson or other Member had been informed of the charges against him and given a reasonable opportunity of being heard in respect of those charges.

(3) The Central Government may, by rules, regulate the procedure for the investigation of misbehaviour or incapacity of the
Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson or other Member referred to in sub-
section (2).



The salaries and allowances payable to, and the other terms and conditions of service (including pension, gratuity and other retirement benefits) of, the Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson. and other Member shall be such as may be prescribed:

Provided that neither the salary and allowances nor the, other terms and conditions of service of the Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson or other Member shall be varied to his disadvantage after his appointment.



On ceasing to hold office,-

(a) The Chairperson of the Tribunal shall be ineligible for further employment either under the Government of India or under the Government of a State;

(b) The Vice-Chairperson of the Tribunal shall, subject to the other provisions of this Act, be eligible for appointment as the Chair person of the Tribunal, but not for any other employment either under the Government of India or under the government of a State;

(c) A Member (other than the Chairperson or Vice-Chairperson) of the Tribunal shall, subject to the other provisions of this Act, be eligible for appointment as the Chairperson or Vice-Chairperson of the Tribunal or as the Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson or Member of any other Tribunal, but not for any other employment either under the Government of India or under the Government of a State;

(d) The Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson or other Member shall not appear, act or plead before the Tribunal.

Explanation
.-For the purposes of this section, employment under the Government of India or under the Government of a State includes employment under any local or other authority within the territory of India or under the control of the Government of India or under any corporation or society owned or controlled by the Government.



The Chairperson shall exercise such financial and administrative powers over Benches as may be vested in him under the rules:

Provided that the Chairperson shall have authority to delegate such of his financial and administrative powers as he may think fit to the Vice-Chairperson or any other officer of the Tribunal subject to the condition that the Vice-Chairperson or such officer shall, which exercising such delegated powers, continue to act under the direction, control and supervision of the Chairperson.



(1) The Central Government shall determine the nature and categories of the officers and other employees required to assist the Tribunal in the discharge of its functions and provide the Tribunal with such officers and other employees as it may think fit.

(2) The officers and other employees of the Tribunal shall discharge: their functions under the general superintendence of the
Chairperson.

(3) The salaries and allowances and conditions of service of the officers and other employee of the Tribunal shall be such as may be prescribed.



(1) Where any Benches of the Tribunal are constituted, the Central Government may, from time to time, by notification, make provisions as to the distribution of the business of the Tribunal amongst the Benches and specify the matters which may be dealt with by each Bench.

(2) If any question arises as to whether any matter falls within the purview of the business allocated to A Bench, the decision of the
Chairperson shall be final.

Explanation.-For the removal of doubts, it is hereby declared that the expression "matters" includes applications for interim relief.

Last updated on September, 2016

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