The need for establishment of Administrative Tribunals was first expressed by the Supreme Court in its judgment in RAMACHANDRAN SHANKAR DEVODHAR AND OTHERS v. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA reported in AIR 1974 SC 259.
The Central Administrative Tribunal has been established for adjudication of disputes 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 local authorities within the territory of India or under the control of Government of India and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto. This was done in pursuance of the amendment of Constitution of India by Articles 323A. Started functioning from 1985.The Tribunal follows the principles of natural justice in deciding cases and the procedure, prescribed by Evidence Act or CPC does not apply
The Central Administrative Tribunal is empowered to prescribed its own rules of practice for discharging its functions subject to the Administrative Tribunals Act, 1985 and Rules made there under. For this purpose, the Central Administrative Tribunal Rules of Practice, 1993 have been notified. Similarly, for the purpose of laying down a common procedure for all Benches of the Tribunal, the Central Administrative Tribunal (Procedure) Rules, 1987 have been notified. Under Section 17 of the Administrative Tribunal Act, 1985, the Tribunal has been conferred the power to exercise the same jurisdiction and authority in respect of contempt of itself as a High Court.
There are 1288 posts classified in 38 categories for assisting the Tribunal in discharging its functions.
- An Original Application u/s 19 of the AT Act not to be admitted unless other remedies exhausted :
(1) A Tribunal shall not ordinarily admit an application unless it is satisfied that the applicant had availed of all the remedies available to him under the relevant service rules as to redressal of grievances.
(2) For the purposes of sub-section (1), a person shall be deemed to have availed of all the remedies available to him under the relevant service rules as to redressal of grievances, –
(a) if a final order has been made by the Government or other authority or officer or other person competent to pass such order under such rules, rejecting any appeal preferred or representation made by such person in connection with the grievance; or
(b) where no final order has been made by the Government or other authority or officer or other person competent to pass such order with regard to the appeal preferred or representation made by such person, if a period of six months from the date on which such appeal was preferred or representation was made has expired.
(3) For the purposes of sub-sections (1) and (2), any remedy available to an applicant by way of submission of a memorial to the President or to the Governor of a State or to any other functionary shall not be deemed to be one of the remedies which are available unless the applicant had elected to submit such memorial
- The power of the Tribunal to review its order/decision under section 22(3)(f) of the Act is akin/analogous to the power of a Civil Court under Section 114 read with Order 47 Rule 1 of CPC A decision/order cannot be reviewed under Section 22(3)(f) on the basis of subsequent decision/judgment of a coordinate or larger bench of the Tribunal or of a superior Court. While considering an application for review, the Tribunal must confine its adjudication with reference to material which was available at the time of initial decision. The happening of some subsequent event or development cannot be taken note of for declaring the initial order/decision as vitiated by an error apparent.
- Principal Secretary, Government of Andhra Pradesh and Another Vs. M. Adinarayan (2004) 12 SCC 579, where it has been that the Administrative Tribunal cannot sit as a Court of appeal over a decision based on the finding in the Disciplinary proceedings. Judicial review cannot extend to examination of correctness of the findings.
Service Matters and Writ Jurisdiction
STATE ADMINISTRATIVE TRIBUNALS
Maharastra administrative tribunal In accordance with the provisions of Article 323A of the Constitution of India, Parliament of India, enacted Administrative Tribunals Act, 1985. Central Government issued a Government Gazettee on 22nd April, 1988 for establishment of State Administrative Tribunal for Maharashtra State. Based on the same, Maharashtra Administrative Tribunal was established on 8th July, 1991. The Principal Bench of Maharashtra Administrative Tribunal is in Mumbai and its Benches are at Nagpur and Aurangabad.
West Bengal Administrative Tribunal was established on 16th January, 1995 at Bikash Bhavan, Salt Lake, Kolkata 700091, West Bengal, India under the Administrative Tribunal Act, 1985. But in view of Hon’ble Courts injunction, it could not start functioning effectively before February, 1996. The West Bengal Administrative Tribunal has been set up with the objective to speed up the disposal of cases relating to service matter of State Government Officers and Employees. Chairman of West Bengal Administrative Tribunal is the head of the Tribunal. A decision to modernize the activities of West Bengal Administrative Tribunal has been taken for its smooth and better functioning.