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Vacancies in Central Excise Settlement Commission ‘alarming’; Delhi High Court seeks status report from Central government

The PIL filed by a lawyer named Yashpal Singh through advocates Saurabh Kansal, Pallavi Sharma Kansal and Ashu Chaudhary, stated that the petitioner had filed applications under Right to Information (RTI) Act and the replies revealed that in none of the four benches of the commission – Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai – was the quorum complete with the exception of a chairman who sits at Delhi.

Advocate Saurabh Kansal told the court on Thursday that because of the lack of quorum, the commission has not been able to consider the applications moved before it and irreparable loss is being suffered by applicants because if these applications are not disposed of within nine months, they abate.

The petition said that, according to the RTI response, 193 applications are pending before the commission for settlement.

“The Respondents are entrusted with the duty to appoint the appropriate persons on the Tribunals/Commissions to ensure that legal recourse is available to the citizens and they do not suffer without any fault on their part. Thus, since the positions are lying vacant before settlement commission for a long time and there is a possible scenario of applications abating for no fault of applicants, the present petition is filed in general interest seeking issuance of appropriate writ to Respondent to expeditiously fill the vacancies in the Settlement commission and ensure that no applicant suffers for want of member in the commission,” the plea stated.

Source: Barandbench

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