Report No. 162
Section 17 empowers the Tribunal to punish for contempt.
Chapter IV deals with the procedure to be followed by the Tribunal. The provisions contained under section 19 are extracted below:-
"19. Application to Tribunals.-(1) Subject to the other provisions of this Act, a person aggrieved by any order pertaining to any matter within the jurisdiction of a Tribunal may make an application to the Tribunal for the redressal of his grievance.
Explanation.-For the purposes of this sub-section, "order" means an order made-
(a) by the Government or a local or other authority within the territory of India or under the control of the Government of India or by any corporation [or society] owned or controlled by the Government; or
(b) by an officer, committee or other body or agency of the Government or a local or other authority or corporation [or society] referred to in clause (a).
(2) Every application under sub-section (1) shall be in such form and be accompanied by such documents or other evidence and by such fee (if any, not exceeding one hundred rupees) [in respect of the filing of such application and by such other fees for service or execution of processes, as may be prescribed by the Central Government].
(3) [On receipt of an application under sub-section (1), the Tribunal shall, if satisfied after such inquiry as it may deem necessary, that the application is a fit case for adjudication or trial by it, admit such application; but where the Tribunal is not so satisfied, it may summarily reject the application after recording its reasons]
(4) Where an application has been admitted by a Tribunal under sub-section (3), every proceeding under the relevant service rules as to redressal of grievances in relation to the subject-matter of such application pending immediately before such admission shall abate and save as otherwise directed by the Tribunal, no appeal or representation in relation 'to such matter shall thereafter be entertained under such rules."
Under section 20, it is provided that applications by the tribunal shall not ordinarily be admitted unless other remedies are exhausted. Section 21 prescribes the limitation period within which the application can be entertained by the tribunal. Section 22 provides that a tribunal shall not be bound by the procedure laid down by the Code of Civil Procedure, but shall be guided by the principles of natuial justice and subject to other provisions of the Act and the rules made by the Central Government.
The tribunal shall have power to regulate its own procedure including the fixing of places and times of its enquiry and deciding whether to sit in public or in private. Sub-section (2) thereof provides that every application made to the tribunal shall be decided expeditiously as possible and ordinarily every application shall be decided on a perusal of documents and written representations and after hearing such oral arguments as may be advanced. The powers vested in a tribunal are set out under sub-section (3) of section 22 of the Act.
Section 24 lays down conditions as to making of interim orders.
Section 27 deals with execution of orders of a tribunal and section 28 excludes the jurisdiction of courts except the Supreme Court under Article 136 of the Constitution. However, the finality of the tribunals decisions is now open to challenge under the writ jurisdiction before the concerned High Court in view of L. Chandra Kumar's decision (infra).