The NLIU Law Review wishes its readers a very Happy New Year!

We at NLIU-Law Review would like to start the year by presenting to you an Article titled “Evaluating the National Green Tribunal after nearly a Decade: Ten Challenges to Overcome”, co-authored by Raghuveer Nath and Dr. Armin Rosencranz.

Raghuveer Nath is an associate at Trilegal and Dr. Armin Rosencranz is the Professor of Law and Public Policy at the Jindal Global Law School.

Abstract

It has been nearly a decade since the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010 was enacted. During this period, the National Green Tribunal has positively changed environmental adjudication in India by adding scientific expertise to the adjudication process. Moreover, disposal of cases has become more expeditious and effective. However, there are still challenges that the NGT needs to overcome.

Through this paper, the authors explore ten such challenges which have a significant bearing on the functioning of the National Green Tribunal and can affect its relevance in the next decade. These involve matters relating to the apathetic attitude of the government with respect to the Tribunal and efforts made to undermine its powers. These include issues such as lack of infrastructure and basic amenities, delays in appointments of members, dilution of the independence of the Tribunal through amendments in the Finance Act, 2017, and viewing the Tribunal as an obstacle to development.

Further, the authors explore issues relating to how High Courts have responded to the Tribunal’s adjudication. In particular, the frequent appeals being heard by the Madras and Telangana High Courts and the curb on the exercise of suo motu jurisdiction by the Tribunal are discussed. Additionally, the authors highlight issues within the Tribunal such as non-scientific determination of environmental compensation, trend of not penalizing governmental authorities, lack of access to justice, and the non-implementation of orders and awards.