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NATIONAL GREEN TRIBUNAL ACT 2010

THE NATIONAL GREEN TRIBUNAL ACT, 2010
(NO. 19 OF 2010)
[2nd June, 2010.]
An Act to provide for the establishment of a National Green Tribunal for the effective
and expeditious
disposal of cases relating to environmental protection and
conservation of forests and other natural resources including enforcement
of any
legal right relating to environment and giving relief and compensation for damages
to persons and property and for matters
connected therewith or incidental thereto.
AND WHEREAS India is a party to the decisions taken at the United Nations Conference
on
the Human Environment held at Stockholm in June, 1972, in which India participated,
calling upon the States to take appropriate steps
for the protection and improvement of
the human environment;
AND WHEREAS decisions were taken at the United Nations Conference on
Environment and Development held at Rio de Janeiro in June, 1992, in which India
participated, calling upon the States to provide
effective access to judicial and
administrative proceedings, including redress and remedy and to develop national laws
regarding
liability and compensation for the victims of pollution and other environmental
damage;
AND WHEREAS in the judicial pronouncement
in India, the right to healthy
environment has been construed as a part of the right to life under article 21 of the
Constitution;
AND WHEREAS it is considered expedient to implement the decisions taken at the
aforesaid conferences and to have a National Green
Tribunal in view of the involvement
of multi-disciplinary issues relating to the environment.
BE it enacted by Parliament in the
Sixty-first Year of the Republic of India as
follows: --
CHAPTER I
PRELIMINARY
1. Short title and commencement. - (1) This Act may
be called the National Green
Tribunal Act, 2010.
(2) It shall come into force on such date as the Central Government may, by notification
in the Official Gazette, appoint.
2. Definitions.
- (1) In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,--
(a) "accident" means an accident involving a fortuitous or sudden or
unintended occurrence while handling any hazardous substance or equipment, or
plant, or vehicle resulting in continuous or intermittent
or repeated exposure to
death, of, or, injury to, any person or damage to any property or environment but
does not include an accident
by reason only of war or civil disturbance;
(b) "Chairperson" means the Chairperson of the National Green Tribunal;
(c) "environment"
includes water, air and land and the inter-relationship, which
exists among and between water, air and land and human beings, other
living
creatures, plants, micro-organism and property;
(d) "Expert Member" means a member of the Tribunal who, is appointed as
such,
and holds qualifications specified in sub-section (2) of section 5, and, is not a
Judicial Member;
(e) "handling", in relation to
any hazardous substance, means the manufacture,
processing, treatment, package, storage, transportation, use, collection, destruction,
conversion, offering for sale, transfer or the like of such hazardous substance;
(f) "hazardous substance" means any substance or
preparation which is defined
as hazardous substance in the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986, and exceeding
such quantity as specified
or may be specified by the Central Government under the
Public Liability Insurance Act, 1991;
(g) "injury" includes permanent, partial or total disablement or sickness
resulting out of an accident;
(h) "Judicial Member" means
a member of the Tribunal who is qualified to be
appointed as such under sub-section (1) of section 5 and includes the Chairperson;
(i) "notification" means a notification published in the Official Gazette;
(j) "person" includes--
(i) an individual,
(ii) a Hindu
undivided family,
(iii) a company,
(iv) a firm,
(v) an association of persons or a body of individuals, whether
incorporated or not,
(vi) trustee of a trust,
(vii) a local authority, and
(viii) every artificial juridical person, not falling within any of the
preceding
sub-clauses;
(k) "prescribed" means prescribed by rules made under this Act;
(l) "Schedule" means Schedules I, II and III appended
to this Act;
(m) "substantial question relating to environment" shall include an instance
where,--
(i) there is a direct violation
of a specific statutory environmental
obligation by a person by which,--
(A) the community at large other than an individual or group
of
individuals is affected or likely to be affected by the environmental
consequences; or
(B) the gravity of damage to the environment
or property is
substantial; or
(C) the damage to public health is broadly measurable;
(ii) the environmental consequences relate
to a specific activity or a point
source of pollution;
(n) "Tribunal" means the National Green Tribunal established under section
3;
(o) "workman" has the meaning assigned to it in the Workmen's Compensation
Act, 1923.
(2) The words and expressions used in this Act but not defined herein and defined in
the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974, the Water (Prevention and
Control of Pollution) Cess Act, 1977, the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980, the Air
(Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981, the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986,
the Public Liability Insurance Act, 1991 and the Biological Diversity Act, 2002 and other
Acts relating to environment shall have the meaning, respectively, assigned to them in
those Acts.
CHAPTER II
ESTABLISHMENT
OF THE TRIBUNAL
3. Establishment of Tribunal. - The Central Government shall, by notification,
establish, with effect from such date
as may be specified therein, a Tribunal to be known
as the National Green Tribunal to exercise the jurisdiction, powers and authority
conferred on such Tribunal by or under this Act.
4. Composition of Tribunal. - (1) The Tribunal shall consist of--
(a) a full time
Chairperson;
(b) not less than ten but subject to maximum of twenty full time Judicial
Members as the Central Government may, from
time to time, notify;
(c) not less than ten but subject to maximum of twenty full time Expert
Members, as the Central Government
may, from time to time, notify.
(2) The Chairperson of the Tribunal may, if considered necessary, invite any one or
more person having
specialised knowledge and experience in a particular case before the
Tribunal to assist the Tribunal in that case.
(3) The Central
Government may, by notification, specify the ordinary place or
places of sitting of the Tribunal, and the territorial jurisdiction
falling under each such
place of sitting.
(4) The Central Government may, in consultation with the Chairperson of the
Tribunal, make
rules regulating generally the practices and procedure of the Tribunal
including--
(a) the rules as to the persons who shall be entitled
to appear before the
Tribunal;
(b) the rules as to the procedure for hearing applications and appeals and other
matters [including
the circuit procedure for hearing at a place other than the ordinary
place of its sitting falling within the jurisdiction referred
to in sub-section (3)],
pertaining to the applications and appeals;
(c) the minimum number of Members who shall hear the applications
and
appeals in respect of any class or classes of applications and appeals:
Provided that the number of Expert Members shall, in
hearing an application or
appeal, be equal to the number of Judicial Members hearing such application or
appeal;
(d) rules relating
to transfer of cases by the Chairperson from one place of
sitting (including the ordinary place of sitting) to other place of sitting.
5. Qualifications for appointment of Chairperson, Judicial Member and Expert
Member. - (1) A person shall not be qualified for appointment
as the Chairperson or
Judicial Member of the Tribunal unless he is, or has been, a Judge of the Supreme Court
of India or Chief Justice
of a High Court:
Provided that a person who is or has been a Judge of the High Court shall also be
qualified to be appointed as a
Judicial Member.
(2) A person shall not be qualified for appointment as an Expert Member, unless he,
--
(a) has a degree in Master
of Science (in physical sciences or life sciences)
with a Doctorate degree or Master of Engineering or Master of Technology and has
an experience of fifteen years in the relevant field including five years practical
experience in the field of environment and forests
(including pollution control,
hazardous substance management, environment impact assessment, climate change
management, biological
diversity management and forest conservation) in a reputed
National level institution; or
(b) has administrative experience of fifteen
years including experience of five
years in dealing with environmental matters in the Central or a State Government or
in a reputed
National or State level institution.
(3) The Chairperson, Judicial Member and Expert Member of the Tribunal shall not
hold any other
office during their tenure as such.
(4) The Chairperson and other Judicial and Expert Members shall not, for a period
of two years
from the date on which they cease to hold office, accept any employment
in, or connected with the management or administration of,
any person who has
been a party to a proceeding before the Tribunal under this Act:
Provided that nothing contained in this section
shall apply to any employment
under the Central Government or a State Government or local authority or in any
statutory authority or any corporation
established by or under any Central, State or
Provincial Act or a Government company as defined in section 617 of the Companies
Act, 1956.
6. Appointment of Chairperson, Judicial Member and Expert Member. - (1) Subject
to the provisions of section 5, the Chairperson,
Judicial Members and Expert Members of
the Tribunal shall be appointed by the Central Government.
(2) The Chairperson shall be appointed
by the Central Government in consultation
with the Chief Justice of India.
(3) The Judicial Members and Expert Members of the Tribunal
shall be appointed
on the recommendations of such Selection Committee and in such manner as may be
prescribed.
7. Term of office
and other conditions of service of Chairperson, Judicial Member
and Expert Member. - The Chairperson, Judicial Member and Expert
Member of the
Tribunal shall hold office as such for a term of five years from the date on which they
enter upon their office, but
shall not be eligible for re-appointment:
Provided that in case a person, who is or has been a Judge of the Supreme Court, has
been
appointed as Chairperson or Judicial Member of the Tribunal, he shall not hold
office after he has attained the age of seventy years:
Provided further that in case a person, who is or has been the Chief Justice of a High
Court, has been appointed as Chairperson or
Judicial Member of the Tribunal, he shall
not hold office after he has attained the age of sixty-seven years:
Provided also that
in case a person, who is or has been a Judge of a High Court, has
been appointed as Judicial Member of the Tribunal, he shall not
hold office after he has
attained the age of sixty-seven years:
Provided also that no Expert Member shall hold office after he has
attained the age
of sixty-five years.
8. Resignation. - The Chairperson, Judicial Member and Expert Member of the
Tribunal may, by
notice in writing under their hand addressed to the Central Government,
resign their office.
9. Salaries, allowances and other terms
and conditions of service. - The salaries and
allowances payable to, and the other terms and conditions of service (including pension,
gratuity and other retirement benefits) of, the Chairperson, Judicial Member and Expert
Member of the Tribunal shall be such as may
be prescribed:
Provided that neither the salary and allowances nor the other terms and conditions of
service of the Chairperson,
Judicial Member and Expert Member shall be varied to their
disadvantage after their appointment.
10. Removal and suspension of Chairperson,
Judicial Member and Expert Member.
- (1) The Central Government may, in consultation with the Chief Justice of India,
remove from
office of the Chairperson or Judicial Member of the Tribunal, who,--
(a) has been adjudged an insolvent; or
(b) has been convicted
of an offence which, in the opinion of the Central
Government, involves moral turpitude; or
(c) has become physically or mentally
incapable; or
(d) has acquired such financial or other interest as is likely to affect
prejudicially his functions; or
(e) has so
abused his position as to render his continuance in office prejudicial
to the public interest.
(2) The Chairperson or Judicial Member
shall not be removed from his office except
by an order made by the Central Government after an inquiry made by a Judge of the
Supreme
Court in which such Chairperson or Judicial Member has been informed of the
charges against him and given a reasonable opportunity
of being heard in respect of those
charges.
(3) The Central Government may suspend from office the Chairperson or Judicial
Member
in respect of whom a reference of conducting an inquiry has been made to the
Judge of the Supreme Court under sub-section (2), until
the Central Government passes
an order on receipt of the report of inquiry made by the Judge of the Supreme Court on
such reference.
(4) The Central Government may, by rules, regulate the procedure for inquiry
referred to in sub-section (2).
(5) The Expert Member
may be removed from his office by an order of the Central
Government on the grounds specified in sub-section (1) and in accordance
with the
procedure as may be notified by the Central Government:
Provided that the Expert Member shall not be removed unless he has been given an
opportunity of being heard
in the matter.
11. To act as Chairperson of Tribunal or to discharge his functions in certain
circumstances. - In the event of the
occurrence of any vacancy in the office of the
Chairperson of the Tribunal, by reason of his death, resignation or otherwise, such
Judicial Member of the Tribunal as the Central Government may, by notification,
authorise in this behalf, shall act as the Chairperson
until the date on which a new
Chairperson is appointed in accordance with the provisions of this Act.
12. Staff of Tribunal. - (1)
The Central Government shall determine the nature and
categories of the officers and other employees required to assist the Tribunal
in the
discharge of its functions.
(2) The recruitment of the officers and other employees of the Tribunal shall be
made by the Chairperson
in such manner as may be prescribed.
(3) The officers and other employees of the Tribunal shall discharge their functions
under the
general superintendence of the Chairperson.
(4) The salaries and allowances and conditions of service of the officers and other
employees
of the Tribunal shall be such as may be prescribed.
13. Financial and administrative powers of Chairperson. - The Chairperson of
the
Tribunal shall exercise such financial and administrative powers as may be vested in him
under the rules made by the Central
Government:
Provided that the Chairperson may delegate such of his financial and administrative
powers, as he may think fit, to any
Judicial Member or Expert Member or officer of the
Tribunal subject to the condition that the Member or such officer, while exercising
such
delegated power, continues to act under the direction, control and supervision of the
Chairperson.
CHAPTER III
JURISDICTION,
POWERS AND PROCEEDINGS OF THE TRIBUNAL
14. Tribunal to settle disputes. - (1) The Tribunal shall have the jurisdiction over all
civil
cases where a substantial question relating to environment (including enforcement
of any legal right relating to environment), is
involved and such question arises out of the
implementation of the enactments specified in Schedule I.
(2) The Tribunal shall hear
the disputes arising from the questions referred to in sub-
section (1) and settle such disputes and pass order thereon.
(3) No application
for adjudication of dispute under this section shall be entertained
by the Tribunal unless it is made within a period of six months
from the date on which
the cause of action for such dispute first arose:
Provided that the Tribunal may, if it is satisfied that
the applicant was prevented by
sufficient cause from filing the application within the said period, allow it to be filed
within a
further period not exceeding sixty days.
15. Relief, compensation and restitution. - (1) The Tribunal may, by an order,
provide,--
(a) relief and compensation to the victims of pollution and other environmental
damage arising under the enactments specified in
the Schedule I (including accident
occurring while handling any hazardous substance);
(b) for restitution of property damaged;
(c)
for restitution of the environment for such area or areas,
as the Tribunal may think fit.
(2) The relief and compensation and restitution
of property and environment referred
to in clauses (a), (b) and (c) of sub-section (1) shall be in addition to the relief paid or
payable under the Public Liability Insurance Act, 1991.
(3) No application for grant of any compensation or relief or restitution of property
or environment under this section shall be
entertained by the Tribunal unless it is made
within a period of five years from the date on which the cause for such compensation
or
relief first arose:
Provided that the Tribunal may, if it is satisfied that the applicant was prevented by
sufficient cause from
filing the application within the said period, allow it to be filed
within a further period not exceeding sixty days.
(4) The Tribunal
may, having regard to the damage to public health, property and
environment, divide the compensation or relief payable under separate
heads specified in
Schedule II so as to provide compensation or relief to the claimants and for restitution of
the damaged property
or environment, as it may think fit.
(5) Every claimant of the compensation or relief under this Act shall intimate to the
Tribunal
about the application filed to, or, as the case may be, compensation or relief
received from, any other court or authority.
16. Tribunal
to have appellate jurisdiction. - Any person aggrieved by,--
(a) an order or decision, made, on or after the commencement of the
National
Green Tribunal Act, 2010, by the appellate authority under section 28 of the Water
(Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974;
(b) an order passed, on or after the commencement of the National Green
Tribunal Act, 2010, by the State Government under section 29 of the Water
(Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974;
(c) directions issued, on or after the commencement of the National Green
Tribunal Act, 2010, by a Board, under section 33A of the Water (Prevention and
Control of Pollution) Act, 1974;
(d) an order or decision made, on or after the commencement of the National
Green Tribunal Act, 2010, by the appellate authority under section 13 of the Water
(Prevention and Control of Pollution) Cess Act, 1977;
(e) an order or decision made, on or after the commencement of the National
Green Tribunal Act, 2010, by the State Government or other authority under section
2 of the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980;
(f) an order or decision, made, on or after the commencement of the National
Green Tribunal Act, 2010, by the Appellate Authority under section 31 of the Air
(Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981;
(g) any direction issued,
on or after the commencement of the National Green
Tribunal Act, 2010, under section 5 of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986;
(h) an order made, on or after the commencement of the National Green
Tribunal Act, 2010, granting environmental clearance in the area in which any
industries, operations or processes or class of industries, operations
and processes
shall not be carried out or shall be carried out subject to certain safeguards under the
Environment (Protection) Act,
1986;
(i) an order made, on or after the commencement of the National Green
Tribunal Act, 2010, refusing to grant environmental clearance for carrying out any
activity or operation or process under the Environment (Protection)
Act, 1986;
(j) any determination of benefit sharing or order made, on or after the
commencement of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010, by the National
Biodiversity Authority or a State Biodiversity Board under the provisions of the
Biological Diversity Act, 2002,
may, within a period of thirty days from the date on which the order or decision or
direction or determination is communicated to
him, prefer an appeal to the Tribunal:
Provided that the Tribunal may, if it is satisfied that the appellant was prevented by
sufficient
cause from filing the appeal within the said period, allow it to be filed under
this section within a further period not exceeding
sixty days.
17. Liability to pay relief or compensation in certain cases. - (1) Where death of, or
injury to, any person (other than
a workman) or damage to any property or environment
has resulted from an accident or the adverse impact of an activity or operation
or process,
under any enactment specified in Schedule I, the person responsible shall be liable to pay
such relief or compensation
for such death, injury or damage, under all or any of the
heads specified in Schedule II, as may be determined by the Tribunal.
(2)
If the death, injury or damage caused by an accident or the adverse impact of an
activity or operation or process under any enactment
specified in Schedule I cannot
beattributed to any single activity or operation or process but is the combined or resultant
effect
of several such activities, operations and processes, the Tribunal may, apportion
the liability for relief or compensation amongst
those responsible for such activities,
operations and processes on an equitable basis.
(3) The Tribunal shall, in case of an accident,
apply the principle of no fault.
18. Application or appeal to Tribunal. - (1) Each application under sections 14 and
15 or an appeal
under section 16 shall, be made to the Tribunal in such form, contain
such particulars, and, be accompanied by such documents and
such fees as may be
prescribed.
(2) Without prejudice to the provisions contained in section 16, an application for
grant of relief
or compensation or settlement of dispute may be made to the Tribunal by
--
(a) the person, who has sustained the injury; or
(b) the
owner of the property to which the damage has been caused; or
(c) where death has resulted from the environmental damage, by all
or any of
the legal representatives of the deceased; or
(d) any agent duly authorised by such person or owner of such property or
all
or any of the legal representatives of the deceased, as the case may be; or
(e) any person aggrieved, including any representative
body or organisation; or
(f) the Central Government or a State Government or a Union territory
Administration or the Central Pollution
Control Board or a State Pollution Control
Board or a Pollution Control Committee or a local authority, or any environmental
authority
constituted or established under the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 or
any other law for the time being in force:
Provided that
where all the legal representatives of the deceased have not
joined in any such application for compensation or relief or settlement
of dispute,
the application shall be made on behalf of, or, for the benefit of all the legal
representatives of the deceased and
the legal representatives who have not so joined
shall be impleaded as respondents to the application:
Provided further that the
person, the owner, the legal representative, agent,
representative body or organisation shall not be entitled to make an application
for
grant of relief or compensation or settlement of dispute if such person, the owner,
the legal representative, agent, representative
body or organisation have preferred an
appeal under section 16.
(3) The application, or as the case may be, the appeal filed before
the Tribunal under
this Act shall be dealt with by it as expeditiously as possible and endeavour shall be made
by it to dispose of
the application, or, as the case may be, the appeal, finally within six
months from the date of filing of the application, or as
the case may be, the appeal, after
providing the parties concerned an opportunity to be heard.
19. Procedure and powers of Tribunal.
- (1) The Tribunal shall not be bound by the
procedure laid down by the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 but shall be guided by the
principles of natural justice.
(2) Subject to the provisions of this Act, the Tribunal shall have power to regulate its
own procedure.
(3) The Tribunal shall also
not be bound by the rules of evidence contained in the
Indian Evidence Act, 1872.
(4) The Tribunal shall have, for the purposes of discharging its functions under this
Act, the same powers as are vested in a civil
court under the Code of Civil Procedure,
1908, while trying a suit, in respect of the following matters, namely:--
(a) summoning
and enforcing the attendance of any person and examining him
on oath;
(b) requiring the discovery and production of documents;
(c)
receiving evidence on affidavits;
(d) subject to the provisions of sections 123 and 124 of the Indian Evidence
Act, 1872, requisitioning any public record or document or copy of such record or
document from any office;
(e) issuing commissions for the
examination of witnesses or documents;
(f) reviewing its decision;
(g) dismissing an application for default or deciding it ex parte;
(h) setting aside any order of dismissal of any application for default or any
order passed by it ex parte;
(i) pass an interim order
(including granting an injunction or stay) after
providing the parties concerned an opportunity to be heard, on any application made
or appeal filed under this Act;
(j) pass an order requiring any person to cease and desist from committing or
causing any violation
of any enactment specified in Schedule I;
(k) any other matter which may be prescribed.
(5) All proceedings before the Tribunal shall
be deemed to be the judicial
proceedings within the meaning of sections 193, 219 and 228 for the purposes of section
196 of the Indian
Penal Code and the Tribunal shall be deemed to be a civil court for the
purposes of
section 195 and Chapter XXVI of the Code of Criminal
Procedure, 1973.
20. Tribunal to apply certain principles. - The Tribunal shall, while passing any
order or decision or award, apply
the principles of sustainable development, the
precautionary principle and the polluter pays principle.
21. Decision to be taken
by majority. - The decision of the Tribunal by majority of
Members shall be binding:
Provided that if there is a difference of opinion
among the Members hearing an
application or appeal, and the opinion is equally divided, the Chairperson shall hear (if he
has not
heard earlier such application or appeal) such application or appeal and decide:
Provided further that where the Chairperson himself
has heard such application or
appeal alongwith other Members of the Tribunal, and if there is a difference of opinion
among the Members
in such cases and the opinion is equally devided, he shall refer the
matter to other Members of the Tribunal who shall hear such
application or appeal and
decide.
22. Appeal to Supreme Court. - Any person aggrieved by any award, decision or
order of the Tribunal,
may, file an appeal to the Supreme Court, within ninety days from
the date of communication of the award, decision or order of the
Tribunal, to him, on any
one or more of the grounds specified in section 100 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908:
Provided that
the Supreme Court may entertain any appeal after the expiry of
ninety days, if it is satisfied that the appellant was prevented by
sufficient cause from
preferring the appeal.
23. Cost. - (1) While disposing of an application or an appeal under this Act, the
Tribunal
shall have power to make such order as to costs, as it may consider necessary.
(2) Where the Tribunal holds that a claim is not maintainable,
or is false or
vexatious, and such claim is disallowed, in whole or in part, the Tribunal may, if it so
thinks fit, after recording
its reasons for holding such claim to be false or vexatious, make
an order to award costs, including lost benefits due to any interim
injunction.
24. Deposit of amount payable for damage to environment. - (1) Where any amount
by way of compensation or relief is ordered
to be paid under any award or order made by
the Tribunal on the ground of any damage to environment, that amount shall be remitted
to the authority specified under sub-section (3) of section 7A of the Public Liability
Insurance Act, 1991 for being credited to the Environmental Relief Fund established
under that section.
(2) The amount of compensation or relief credited
to the Environmental Relief Fund
under sub-section (1), may, notwithstanding anything contained in the Public Liability
Insurance Act, 1991, be utilised by such persons or authority, in such manner and for
such purposes relating to environment, as may be prescribed.
25.
Execution of award or order or decision of Tribunal. - 1) An award or order or
decision of the Tribunal under this Act shall be executable
by the Tribunal as a decree of
a civil court, and for this purpose, the Tribunal shall have all the powers of a civil court.
(2)
Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1), the Tribunal may
transmit any order or award made by it to a civil court having
local jurisdiction and such
civil court shall execute the order or award as if it were a decree made by that court.
(3) Where the
person responsible, for death of, or injury to any person or damage to
any property and environment, against whom the award or order
is made by the Tribunal,
fails to make the payment or deposit the amount as directed by the Tribunal within the
period so specified
in the award or order, such amount, without prejudice to the filing of
complaint for prosecution for an offence under this Act or
any other law for the time
being in force, shall be recoverable from the aforesaid person as arrears of land revenue
or of public
demand.
CHAPTER IV
PENALTY
26. Penalty for failure to comply with orders of Tribunal. - (1) Whoever, fails to
comply with any order
or award or decision of the Tribunal under this Act, he shall be
punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three
years, or with fine
which may extend to ten crore rupees, or with both and in case the failure or
contravention continues, with additional
fine which may extend to twenty-five thousand
rupees for every day during which such failure or contravention continues after
conviction
for the first such failure or contravention:
Provided that in case a company fails to comply with any order or award or a
decision
of the Tribunal under this Act, such company shall be punishable with fine
which may extend to twenty-five crore rupees, and in case
the failure or contravention
continues, with additional fine which may extend to one lakh rupees for every day during
which such
failure or contravention continues after conviction for the first such failure or
contravention.
(2) Notwithstanding anything contained
in the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973,
every offence under this Act shall be deemed to be non-cognizable within the meaning of
the said Code.
27. Offences by companies. - (1) Where any offence under this Act has been
committed by a company, every person who,
at the time the offence was committed, was
directly in charge of, and was responsible to the company for the conduct of the business
of the company, as well as the company, shall be deemed to be guilty of the offence and
shall be liable to be proceeded against and
punished accordingly:
Provided that nothing contained in this sub-section shall render any such person
liable to any punishment provided
in this Act, if he proves that the offence was
committed without his knowledge or that he had exercised all due diligence to prevent
the
commission of such offence.
(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1), where an offence under
this Act has been
committed by the company and it is proved that the offence has been
committed with the consent or connivance of, or is attributable
to any neglect on the part
of, any director, manager, secretary or other officer of the company, such director,
manager, secretary
or other officer shall also be deemed to be guilty of that offence and
shall be liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly.
Explanation.-- For the purposes of this section,--
(a) "company" means any body corporate and includes a firm or other
association
of individuals; and
(b) "director" in relation to a firm means a partner in the firm.
28. Offences by Government Department. - (1)
Where any Department of the
Government fails to comply with any order or award or decision of the Tribunal under
this Act, the Head
of the Department shall be deemed to be guilty of such failure and
shall be liable to be proceeded against for having committed an offence under this
Act
and punished accordingly:
Provided that nothing contained in this section shall render such Head of the
Department liable to
any punishment if he proves that the offence was committed without
his knowledge or that he exercised all due diligence to prevent
the commission of such
offence.
(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1), where an offence under
this Act has been
committed by a Department of the Government and it is proved that the
offence has been committed with the consent or connivance of,
or is attributable to any
neglect on the part of any officer, other than the Head of the Department, such officer
shall also be deemed
to be guilty of that offence and shall be liable to be proceeded
against and punished accordingly.
CHAPTER V
MISCELLANEOUS
29. Bar
of jurisdiction. - (1) With effect from the date of establishment of the Tribunal
under this Act, no civil court shall have jurisdiction
to entertain any appeal in respect of
any matter, which the Tribunal is empowered to determine under its appellate
jurisdiction.
(2) No civil court shall have jurisdiction to settle dispute or entertain any question
relating to any claim for granting any relief
or compensation or restitution of property
damaged or environment damaged which may be adjudicated upon by the Tribunal, and
no injunction
in respect of any action taken or to be taken by or before the Tribunal in
respect of the settlement of such dispute or any such
claim for granting any relief or
compensation or restitution of property damaged or environment damaged shall be
granted by the civil
court.
30. Cognizance of offences. - (1) No court shall take cognizance of any offence under
this Act except on a complaint made
by--
(a) the Central Government or any authority or officer authorised in this behalf
by that Government; or
(b) any person who has
given notice of not less than sixty days in such manner
as may be prescribed, of the alleged offence and of his intention to make
a
complaint, to the Central Government or the authority or officer authorised as
aforesaid.
(2) No court inferior to that of a Metropolitan
Magistrate or, a Judicial Magistrate of
the first class shall try any offence punishable under this Act.
31. Members and staff of
Tribunal to be public servants. - The Chairperson, the Judicial
and Expert Members, officers and other employees of the Tribunal
shall be deemed to be
public servants within the meaning of section 21 of the Indian Penal Code.
32. Protection of action taken in
good faith. - (1) No suit or other legal proceeding shall
lie against the employees of the Central Government or a State Government
or any
statutory authority, for anything which is in good faith done or intended to be done in
pursuance of this Act or any rule
or order made thereunder.
(2) No suit, prosecution or other legal proceeding shall lie against the Chairperson or,
Judicial Member
or Expert Member of the Tribunal or any other person authorised by the
Chairperson or Judicial Member or the Expert Member for anything
which is in good
faith done or intended to be done in pursuance of this Act or any rule or order made
thereunder.
33. Act to have
overriding effect. - The provisions of this Act, shall have effect
notwithstanding anything inconsistent contained in any other law
for the time being in
force or in any instrument having effect by virtue of any law other than this Act.
34. Power to amend Schedule
I. - (1) The Central Government may, by notification,
amend the Schedule I by including therein any other Act, enacted by Parliament
having
regard to the objective of environmental protection and conservation of natural resources,
or omitting therefrom any Act already
specified therein and on the date of publication of
such notification, such Act shall be deemed to be included in or, as the case
may be,
omitted from the Schedule I.
(2) A copy of every notification proposed to be issued under sub-section (1), shall be laid
in draft before each House of Parliament,
while it is in session, for a total period of thirty
days which may be comprised in one session or in two or more successive sessions,
and
if, before the expiry of the session immediately following the session or the successive
sessions aforesaid, both Houses agree
in disapproving the issue of the notification or both
Houses agree in making any modification in the notification, the notification
shall not be
issued or, as the case may be, shall be issued only in such modified form as may be
agreed upon by both the Houses.
35. Power to make rules. - (1) The Central Government may, by notification in the
Official Gazette, make rules for carrying out the
provisions of this Act.
(2) In particular, and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power, such
rules may provide
for all or any of the following matters, namely:--
(a) rules as to the persons who shall be entitled to appear before the Tribunal
under
clause (a) of sub-section (4) of section 4;
(b) the procedure for hearing applications and appeals and other matters pertaining
to the applications and appeals under clause (b) of sub-section (4) of section 4;
(c) the minimum number of members who shall hear
the applications and appeals in
respect of any class or classes of applications and appeals under clause (c) of sub-
section (4)
of section 4;
(d) the transfer of cases by the Chairperson from one place of sitting (including the
ordinary place of sitting) to
other place of sitting;
(e) the selection committee and the manner of appointment of the Judicial
Member and Expert Member of the
Tribunal under sub-section (3) of section 6;
(f) the salaries and allowances payable to, and other terms and conditions of
service
(including pension, gratuity and other retirement benefits) of, the
Chairperson, Judicial Member and Expert Member of the Tribunal
under section 9;
(g) the procedure for inquiry of the charges against the Chairperson or Judicial
Member of the Tribunal under sub-section
(4) of section 10;
(h) the recruitment of officers and other employees of the Tribunal under sub-
section (2) of section 12; and
the salaries and allowances and other conditions of
service of the officers and other employees of the Tribunal under sub-section
(4) of
that section;
(i) the financial and administrative powers to be exercised by the Chairperson
of the Tribunal under section
13;
(j) the form of application or appeal, the particulars which it shall contain and
the documents to be accompanied by and the
fees payable under sub-section (1) of
section 18;
(k) any such matter in respect of which the Tribunal shall have powers of a civil
court under clause (k) of sub-section (4) of section 19;
(l) the manner and the purposes for which the amount of compensation or
relief
credited to the Environment Relief Fund shall be utilised under sub-section (2) of
section 24;
(m) the manner of giving notice
to make a complaint under clause (b) of sub-
section (1) of section 30;
(n) any other matter which is required to be, or may be,
specified by rules or in
respect of which provision is to be made by rules.
(3) Every rule made under this Act by the Central Government
shall be laid, as soon
as may be after it is made, before each House of Parliament, while it is in session, for a
total period of
thirty days which may be comprised in one session or in two or more
successive sessions, and if, before the expiry of the session
immediately following the
session or thesuccessive sessions aforesaid, both Houses agree in making any
modification in the rule or
both Houses agree that the rule should not be made, the rule
shall thereafter have effect only in such modified form or be of no
effect, as the case may
be; so, however, that any such modification or annulment shall be without prejudice to
the validity of anything
previously done under that rule.
36. Amendment of certain enactments. - The enactments specified in the Schedule III to
this Act shall be amended in the manner specified therein
and such amendments shall
take effect on the date of establishment of the Tribunal.
37. Power to remove difficulties. - (1) If any
difficulty arises in giving effect to the
provisions of this Act, the Central Government, may, by order published in the Official
Gazette, make such provisions, not inconsistent with the provisions of this Act as may
appear to it to be necessary for removing
the difficulty:
Provided that no such order shall be made after the expiry of a period of two years from
the commencement of this
Act.
(2) Every order made under this section shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made,
before each House of Parliament.
38. Repeal and savings. - (1) The National Environment Tribunal Act, 1995 and the
National Environment Appellate Authority Act, 1997 are hereby repealed (hereinafter
referred to as the repealed Act).
(2) Notwithstanding such repeal, anything done or any action taken
under the said Acts
shall be deemed to have been done or taken under the corresponding provisions of this
Act.
(3) The National Environment
Appellate Authority established under sub-section (1)
of section 3 of the National Environment Appellate Authority Act, 1997, shall, on the
establishment of the National Green Tribunal under the National Green Tribunal Act,
2010, stand dissolved.
(4) On the dissolution of the National Environment Appellate Authority
established under sub-section (1) of section
3 of the National Environment Appellate
Authority
Act, 1997, the persons appointed as the Chairperson, Vice-chairperson and every other
person appointed as Member of the said National Environment
Appellate Authority and
holding office as such immediately before the establishment of the National Green
Tribunal under the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010, shall vacate their respective
offices and no such Chairperson, Vice-chairperson and every other person appointed
as Member shall
be entitled to claim any compensation for the premature termination
of the term of his office or of any contract of service.
(5)
All cases pending before the National Environment Appellate Authority
established under sub-section (1) of section 3 of the National Environment Appellate
Authority
Act, 1997 on or before the establishment of the National Green Tribunal under the
National Green Tribunal Act, 2010, shall, on such establishment, stand transferred to
the said National Green Tribunal and the National Green Tribunal shall dispose
of
such cases as if they were cases filed under that Act.
(6) The officers or other employees who have been, immediately before the
dissolution of the National Environment Appellate Authority appointed on deputation
basis to the National Environment Appellate Authority,
shall, on such dissolution, stand
reverted to their parent cadre, Ministry or Department, as the case may be.
(7) On the dissolution
of the National Environment Appellate Authority, the
officers and other employees appointed on contract basis under the National
Environment Appellate Authority and holding office as such immediately before such
dissolution, shall vacate their respective offices
and such officers and other employees
shall be entitled to claim compensation for three months' pay and allowances or pay
and allowances
for theremaining period of service, whichever is less, for the premature
termination of term of their office under their contract
of service.
(8) The mention of the particular matters referred to in sub-sections (2) to (7) shall
not be held to prejudice or affect
the general application of section 6 of the General
Clauses
Act, 1897 with regard to the effect of repeal.
SCHEDULE I
[See sections 14(1), 15(1), 17(1)(a), 17(2), 19(4) (j) and 34(1)]
1. The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974;
2. The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Cess Act, 1977;
3. The Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980;
4. The Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981;
5. The Environment (Protection) Act, 1986;
6. The Public Liability Insurance Act, 1991;
7. The Biological Diversity Act, 2002.
SCHEDULE II
[See sections 15(4) and 17(1)]
HEADS UNDER WHICH COMPENSATION OR RELIEF FOR DAMAGE MAY BE CLAIMED
(a) Death;
(b) Permanent,
temporary, total or partial disability or other injury or sickness;
(c) Loss of wages due to total or partial disability or permanent
or temporary
disability;
(d) Medical expenses incurred for treatment of injuries or sickness;
(e) Damages to private property;
(f)
Expenses incurred by the Government or any local authority in providing relief,
aid and rehabilitation to the affected persons;
(g)
Expenses incurred by the Government for any administrative or legal action or to
cope with any harm or damage, including compensation
for environmental
degradation and restoration of the quality of environment;
(h) Loss to the Government or local authority arising
out of, or connected with, the
activity causing any damage;
(i) Claims on account of any harm, damage or destruction to the fauna
including
milch and draught animals and aquatic fauna;
(j) Claims on account of any harm, damage or destruction to flora including
aquatic
flora, crops, vegetables, trees and orchards;
(k) Claims including cost of restoration on account of any harm or damage to
environment including pollution of soil, air, water, land and eco-systems;
(l) Loss and destruction of any property other than private
property;
(m) Loss of business or employment or both;
(n) Any other claim arising out of, or connected with, any activity of handling
of
hazardous substance.
SCHEDULE III
(See section 36)
AMENDMENT TO CERTAIN ENACTMENTS
PART I
AMENDMENT TO THE WATER (PREVENTION AND CONTROL OF POLLUTION) ACT, 1974
(6 OF 1974)
. - After section 33A, Insertion of new section 33B the following section shall be
inserted, namely:--
"33B. Appeal to
National Green Tribunal. - Any person aggrieved by,--
(a) an order or decision of the appellate authority under section 28, made
on or after the commencement of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010; or
(b) an order passed by the State Government under section 29, on or after
the commencement of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010; or
(c) directions issued under section 33A by a Board, on or after the
commencement of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010,
may file an appeal to the National Green Tribunal established under section 3 of the
National Green Tribunal Act, 2010, in accordance with the provisions of that Act.".
PART II
AMENDMENTS TO THE WATER (PREVENTION AND CONTROL OF POLLUTION) CESS ACT, 1977
(36 OF 1977)
1. Amendment of section 13. - In section 13, in sub-section (4), for the words "shall be
final", the words, figures
and letters "shall, if no appeal has
been filed under section 13A, be final" shall be substituted.
2. Insertion of new section 13A.
- After section 13, the following section shall be
inserted, namely:--
"13A. Appeal to National Green Tribunal. Any person aggrieved,
by an order or decision
of the appellate authority made under section 13, on or after the commencement of the
National Green Tribunal Act, 2010, may file an appeal to the National Green Tribunal
established under section 3 of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010, in accordance with
the provisions of that Act.".
PART III
AMENDMENT TO THE FOREST (CONSERVATION) ACT, 1980
(69 OF 1980)
After section 2, Insertion of new section 2A. - the following section shall be
inserted, namely:--
"2A. Appeal to National
Green Tribunal. - Any person aggrieved, by an order
or decision of the State Government or other authority made under section 2,
on or
after the commencement of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010, may file an
appeal to the National Green Tribunal established under section 3 of the National
Green Tribunal Act, 2010, in accordance with the provisions of that Act.".
PART IV
AMENDMENT TO THE AIR (PREVENTION AND CONTROL OF POLLUTION) ACT, 1981
(14
OF 1981)
After section 31A, Insertion of new section 31B. - Appeal to National Green Tribunal.
- the following section shall be inserted,
namely:--
"31B. Appeal to National Green Tribunal. - Any person aggrieved by an
order or decision of the Appellate Authority under
section 31, made on or after the
commencement of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010, may file an appeal to the
National Green Tribunal established under section 3 of the National Green Tribunal
Act, 2010, in accordance with the provisions of that Act.".
PART V
AMENDMENT TO THE ENVIRONMENT (PROTECTION) ACT, 1986
(29 OF 1986)
After section
5, Insertion of new section 5A. - the following section shall be
inserted, namely:--
"5A. Appeal to National Green Tribunal. - Any
person aggrieved by any
directions issued under section 5, on or after the commencement of the National
Green Tribunal Act, 2010, may file an appeal to the National Green Tribunal
established under section 3 of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010, in accordance
with the provisions of that Act.".
PART VI
AMENDMENTS TO THE BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY ACT, 2002
(18 OF 2003)
1. Amendment of section 52. - In section 52, after the proviso, the following
provisos shall be inserted, namely:--
"Provided further that nothing contained in this section shall apply on and from
the commencement of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010:
Provided also that any appeal pending before the High Court, before the
commencement of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010, shall continue to be heard
and disposed of by the High Court as if the National Green Tribunal had not been
established under section
3 of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010.".
2. Insertion of new section 52A. - After section 52, the following section shall be
inserted, namely:--
"52A. Appeal to National
Green Tribunal. - Any person aggrieved by any
determination of benefit sharing or order of the National Biodiversity Authority or
a
State Biodiversity Board under this Act, on or after the commencement of the
National Green Tribunal Act, 2010, may file an appeal to the National Green
Tribunal established under section 3 of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010, in
accordance with the provisions of that Act.".
V. K. BHASIN,
Secy. to the Govt. of India.


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