From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : CAT
Mains level : Paper 2- Functioning and independence of CAT
The union govt. has inaugurated the 18th Bench of Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) for the Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.
Try this question from our AWE initiative:
“The Central Administration Tribunal which was established for redressal of grievances and complaints by or against central government employees nowadays is exercising its powers as an independent judicial authority.” Explain. (10 Marks)
What is Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT)?
- 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.
- It aims to provide speedy and inexpensive justice to the aggrieved public servants.
- It adjudicates for the 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 authorizes the Central government to establish one Central Administrative Tribunal and the state administrative tribunals.
Composition of the CAT
- 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.
- A Chairman who has been a sitting or retired Judge of a High Court heads the Central Administrative Tribunal.
- There are now 18 Benches and 21 Circuit Benches in the CAT all over India.
- 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 of working
- 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.
- The orders of CAT 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.