Wednesday, August 10, 2011

More Powers for Armed Forces Tribunals

Govt plans more powers for AFTS by Manu Pubby
Indian Express Posted: Mon Aug 08 2011, 03:39 hrs

With the Armed Forces Tribunal (AFT) expressing anguish over the lack of power to get its orders executed, the government is working on a proposal to give more teeth to the tribunal by amending the AFT Act, 2007. The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has said a proposal to grant the AFT the powers to punish for civil contempt is under consideration and if approved will “take care of the concerns expressed by the Armed Forces Tribunal”.
While the tribunal has been handling thousands of cases related to services issues which were earlier being looked at by high courts, the Principal Bench had recently remarked that the lack of power to punish for civil contempt was hampering the implementation of its orders.
The remark came after several key decision made by the tribunal were not implemented by the defence forces. “The proposal (to increase powers) is under examination in the CoSC (Chiefs of Staff Committee) /Ministry of Defence. If finally approved...will take care of the concerns expressed by AFT,” the ministry has written in a detailed reply to the parliamentary standing committee on defence.
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