The Supreme Court has struck down in entirety rules under Finance Act 2017 related to composition and functioning of judicial tribunals. The apex court directed the government to reform norms governing appointment of tribunal members, and until then follow the existing statutes for tribunals.
A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi also directed the Ministry of Law to conduct an impact study and submit it findings to the apex court. The five-judge bench referred the matter of passing Finance Act as a Money Bill to a larger bench.
The Supreme Court was hearing petitions against certain sections of Finance Act 2017.The petitioners had filed various pleas against Part XIV of the Finance Act 2017. The Part XIV had repealed provisions related to the administration of 26 tribunals. Instead, Section 184 of the act gave the Centre powers to frame the laws related to tribunals.
Petitions against Finance Act 2017 challenged provisions related to tribunals being passed as part of Money Bill on grounds that they do not fulfil the criteria mentioned under Article 110 of the Constitution.
Money Bill refers to a bill that covers tax laws, or matters related to Consolidated Fund and Contingency Fund of India. Also, Money Bills only need approval from Lok Sabha. In this case, suggestions by Rajya Sabha about the Bill were disregarded and the Act was implemented on April 1, 2017.
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