The National Green Tribunal frequently taking suo motu cognizance of reports on environmental damage or violations has found little favour with the Ministry of Environment & Forests (MoEF) which had already refused to amend laws to further empower it.
The Ministry reminded the tribunal that as per the National Green Tribunal Act,2010 no suo motu powers have been provided for. The tribunal has been writing to the Jayanthi Natarajan-led Environment Ministry from 2011 seeking the powers.
The NGT has been asking MoEF to amend the Act. The Environment Ministry had turned down the request. It responded to a query in Parliament saying,the Ministry did not agree with the request of NGT for conferring suo motu powers on the tribunal. The MoEF conveyed it to NGT on December 18,2012.
The government of India has not agreed to confer suo motu powers on the tribunal, the Environment Ministry said. While it desisted from reminding NGT that it may be exceeding its brief by taking suo motu cognizance of environmental issues,it has,in response to a query in Parliament,said it is for the NGT,an adjudicatory body,to follow provisions of the NGT Act,2010.