Published on: 2nd August, 2022 at 18:39 IST
The apex court dismissed a plea regarding tenure extension of members of National Company Law Tribunal. (NCLT)
The plea was filed before the court by NCLT Bar Association that challenged the Central government’s notification of a fixed tenure of 23 NCLT members as 3 yrs instead of 5 yrs, from 2019.
However, the Court denied to entertain the plea. It noted that for the initial 15 vacancies, the appointments will be finalized within four to six weeks by the Central Government. And the Search-cum-Selection Committee headed by a Supreme Court Judge had issued an advertisement for the second tranche of 15 members. So the court was of the view that any order passed by it in this stage would affect the process initiated by the Government.
The Bench comprising Justice DY Chandrachud and Justice Sudhanshu Dhulia noted that, “We are of the view that the appropriate course of action would be to allow the selection process to continue so that it can be concluded soon. Only point which can be stated is that vacancies should be filled expeditiously.”
The Court further observed that there will be no choice of persons available to the bar association to be appointed as members, along with the time period of their service. The Centre shall make adherence to Section 413 of Companies Act with respect to appointment, tenure of members.
The Court noted, “When the September 2019 notification was brought to notice, Centre had extended the tenure of 2 judicial and 6 technical members to 5 years.”
The Centre submitted before the Court that it had extension granted to 8 members and the other 15 failed to meet the criteria of further appointment : of good character, work performance and suitability.
The Centre also submitted that the plea made by the association was not feasible.
The Court accepted the Central Government’s stand and hence, the plea of the association was turned down.