Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) | 17 Feb 2020

Why in News

The annual All India Conference of the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) was held in New Delhi on 16th February, 2020.

  • The Conference was presided over by the Union Minister for Law and Justice.
  • Apart from central services issues, the CAT will soon have jurisdiction to handle disputes and other issues related to the non-central services in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir.

Central Administrative Tribunal

  • Article 323 - A: The Central Administrative Tribunal had been established under Article 323 - A of the Constitution for adjudication of disputes and complaints with respect to recruitment and conditions of service of persons appointed to public services and posts in connection with the affairs of the Union or other authorities under the control of the Government.
    • In pursuance of Article 323-A, the Parliament has passed the Administrative Tribunals Act in 1985. The act authorises the Central government to establish one Central Administrative Tribunal and the state administrative tribunals. This act opened a new chapter in the sphere of providing speedy and inexpensive justice to the aggrieved public servants.
  • Benches: There are 17 Benches and 21 Circuit Benches in the Central Administrative Tribunal all over India.
  • Objective and Composition: The CAT is a specialist body consisting of Administrative Members and Judicial Members who by virtue of their specialized knowledge are better equipped to dispense speedy and effective justice. It was established in 1985.
    • A Chairman who has been a sitting or retired Judge of a High Court heads the Central Administrative Tribunal.
  • Operating Principles:
    • It exercises jurisdiction only in relation to the service matters of the parties covered by the Administrative Tribunals Act, 1985.
    • The Tribunal is guided by the principles of natural justice in deciding cases and is not bound by the procedure, prescribed by the Civil Procedure Code.
    • Under Section 17 of the Administrative Tribunal Act, 1985, the Tribunal has been conferred with the power to exercise the same jurisdiction and authority in respect of contempt of itself as a High Court.
  • Independence: The conditions of service of the Chairman and Members are the same as applicable to a Judge of High Court as per the Administrative Tribunals (Amendment) Act, 2006.
  • Appeals against Orders: The orders of Central Administrative Tribunal are challenged by way of Writ Petition under Article 226/227 of the Constitution before respective High Court in whose territorial jurisdiction the Bench of the Tribunal is situated.

Source: PIB