Supreme Court strikes down rules in amended Finance Act 2017
On 13 Nov, the Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi struck down rules in the amended Finance Act 2017 on tribunals and directed the government to reformulate fresh norms with respect to appointment of tribunal members. The bench directed the Ministry of law to conduct impact study and submit report to the apex court. The Ministry of law has also been asked to conduct an impact study and submit report to the apex court. The Finance Act had given the Centre the power to govern appointments, removal and service conditions of the members of judicial tribunals like National Green Tribunal, Income Tax Appellate Tribunal, National Company Law Appellate Tribunal. The challenge to the Finance Act, 2017, was on the grounds that it was passed as a Money Bill. Money Bills are those which exclusively contain provisions for imposition of taxes and appropriation of moneys out of the Consolidated Fund of India. The petitioners had argued that the passage of the Finance Act in the form of a Money Bill amounted to a fraud on the Constitution since they can only be introduced in the Lok Sabha. The Rajya Sabha can only recommend amendments.