At, High Court of Gujarat At Ahmedabad
By, THE HONOURABLE CHIEF JUSTICE MR. R. SUBHASH REDDY & THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE VIPUL M. PANCHOLI
For the Appellant: Vishal J. Dave, Advocate. For the Respondent: --------------
R. Subhash Reddy, C.J.
1. This writ petition is filed by way of public interest litigation with the prayers which read as under:
"(a) Your Lordships may be pleased to issue any Writ, order or direction more particularly in the nature of a Writ of Mandamus/Certiorari directing the respondents to appoint a "TECHNICAL MEMBER" at National Company Law Tribunal, Ahmedabad Bench at Ahmedabad in accordance with the provisions of the Companies Act, 2013 and pass such further or other orders as this Hon'ble Court may deem fit and necessary in the facts and circumstances of the case and in the interest of justice;
(b) Your Lordships may be pleased to award the cost of the present Petition from the respondents;
(c) Your Lordships may be pleased to grant any other relief or reliefs in the facts and circumstances of the present case as may be deem fit by this Hon'ble Court."
2. In view of the powers conferred under section 419 of the Companies Act, 2013 ('the Act' for short), National Company Law Tribunal issued proceedings dated 5th July, 2016 constituting Benches at various places including a Bench at Ahmedabad with two members viz. Shri Bikki Raveendra Babu, Member (Judicial) and Shri D.M. Gautam, Member (Technical). Subsequently, in exercise of powers conferred under proviso to Section 419(3) of the Act, the Hon'ble President of the National Company Law Tribunal issued another proceeding for constituting a Bench at Ahmedabad only with the Member (Judicial).
3. It is the case of the petitioner that having regard to nature of work in the National Company Law Tribunal, unless there is Member (Technical) included while constituting Bench, it is not possible for the Member (Judicial) alone to effectively discharge functions.
4. At the first instance, Notification was issued by constituting Bench with two members viz. Member (Judicial) and Member (Technical) at Ahmedabad. But subsequently, exercising powers conferred under proviso to section 419 of the Companies Act, 2013, order dated 12.08.2016 is passed constituting Bench at Ahmedabad with only Member (Judicial). Reading of the provisions referred in Section 419 of the Companies Act, it empowers the President to constitute the Bench with only one member. If there is any difficulty, it is open for the petitioner to make representation, but at the same time, we do not find any reason to entertain the petition at this stag
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e. While granting liberty to the petitioner to file representation before the President of National Company Law Tribunal, this petition is disposed of. It is made clear that in the event of any further difficulty, liberty is granted to the petitioner to approach this Court.