More On The National Green Tribunal

On the edit page of the Times of India of date, Arghya Sengupta has a very good article on the National Green Tribunal.

“It is perhaps this legal deficiency that NGT seeks to address by repeatedly speaking in the name of the people. Its empathy is certainly well-intentioned and supporting its orders is tempting for their clear public benefits. But the logical leaps between the need to have clean air and as a result not allowing U-turns in a local market are staggering.

They reflect an institution that is shorn of its legal constraints and acts when it pleases, in a manner it pleases. This is evident when one of the most blatant violations of NGT’s own, earlier order of no-parking on tarred roads anywhere in Delhi often takes place outside NGT itself. No action however has seemingly been taken by the tribunal to address this.

Unfortunately this is a situation that Parliament has unwittingly created over the last three decades by prodigiously setting up tribunals and vesting them with wide powers. This latest order from NGT should provide room for pause. Not only is it symptomatic of an institution that has arrogated to itself powers wider than were intended, but it has also shown itself to be deficient in its fundamental role as a judicial institution that decides matters on the basis of law and reason.

Prime Minister Modi indicated at a conference of Chief Justices and chief ministers recently that mindless tribunalisation must be rethought. The latest order by NGT offers itself as the ideal place to action this rethink.” (from the article)

Read the whole article here.