The Delhi High Court on Monday issued notice in petition by Rajasekhar VK, Member (Judicial), National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) challenging the transfer orders issued by BSV Prakash Kumar, Acting President of National Company Law Tribunal in April and May.
The Single Judge Bench of Justice V Kameswar Rao has also sought counter-affidavits in the matter in one week.
Through orders issued on April 30 and May 12, the Acting President had shuffled the posting of the National Company Law Tribunal Members. The Petitioner was transferred from National Company Law Tribunal Mumbai to NCLT Kolkata and the Acting President transferred himself from National Company Law Tribunal Chennai to NCLT Mumbai.
Rajasekhar VK claims that these transfer orders are illegal, malicious, biased and without any jurisdiction.
The Petitioner has also contended that the transfer orders are in violation of statutory provisions and the rules of transfers as specifiedunder Rule 15A of NCLT (Salary, Allowances & other Terms and Conditions of Service of President and other Members) Rules, 2015.
It is asserted that in the absence of any order passed by the Central Government through the Ministry of Law & Justice, the orders of transfer of NCLT Members was illegal and contrary to the decision of the Supreme Court in UOI vs Madras Bar Association.
The petitioner submitted that amidst a lockdown and absence of a President, there were no compelling circumstances for the issuance of the transfer orders.
The Petitioner has also raised objections on the Acting President first holding court from Chennai and then transferring himself to Mumbai. It is said that this conduct is in violation of Section 419(2) of the Companies Act, 2013 as per which the President ought to preside over the Principal Bench at New Delhi.
Pointing out that Kumar was not High Court Judge and was thus not eligible to be appointed as President, the petitioner has sought an eligible Member be appointed as the Acting President, in place of BSV Prakash Kumar
The matter will now be heard on June 12.
The Petitioner was represented by Advocate Vandana Sehgal.