Finance Ministry notified Qualifications for appointment of ITAT/CESTAT President/Members

Finance Ministry notified Qualifications for appointment of ITAT, CESTAT & Other Tribunals President/Members. Composition of Search-cum Selection Committee

In Nov 2019, a Constitution Bench of the Hon’ble Supreme Court had struck down the Tribunal, Appellate Tribunal and other Authorities (Qualification, Experience and other Conditions of Service of Members) Rules, 2017 formulated u/s 184 of the Finance Act, 2017 being contrary to the parent enactment and the Constitution

The Finance Ministry has now notified the Tribunal, Appellate Tribunal and other Authorities (Qualifications, Experience and other Conditions of Service of Members) Rules, 2020.

These Rules shall come into force on the date of their publication in the Official Gazette.

The said rules shall apply to the Chairman, Vice-Chairman, Chairperson, Vice- Chairperson, President, Vice- President, Presiding Officer, Accountant Member, Administrative Member, Judicial Member, Expert Member, Law Member, Revenue Member, Technical Member, Member of the Tribunal, Appellate Tribunal or, as the case may be, Authority as specified in column (2) of the Eighth Schedule of the Finance Act, 2017 (7 of 2017).

Qualifications for appointment of ITAT Members

The following qualifications has been prescribed for appointment of Members of the Income-tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT) under the Income-tax Act, 1961:

(1) A person shall not be qualified for appointment as President unless he is a sitting or retired Judge of a High Court and who has completed not less than seven years of service as a Judge in a High Court or a Vice-President of the Income-tax Appellate Tribunal.

(2) The Central Government may appoint one or more members of the Income-tax Appellate Tribunal to be the Vice-President or, as the case may be, Vice-Presidents thereof.

(3) A person shall not be qualified for appointment as a Judicial Member, unless, ––

(a) he has, for a combined period of ten years, been a District Judge and Additional District Judge; or

(b) he has been a member of the Indian Legal Service and has held a post of Additional Secretary or any equivalent or higher post for two years; or

(c) he has been an advocate for twenty-five years.

(4) A person shall not be qualified for appointment as an Accountant Member, unless, ––

(i) he has for twenty-five years been in the practice of accountancy, –

(a) as a chartered accountant under the Chartered Accountants Act, 1949 (38 of 1949); or

(b) as a registered accountant under any law formerly in force; or partly as such registered accountant and partly as a chartered accountant; or

(ii) he has been a member of the Indian Revenue Service (Income-tax Service Group ‗A‘) and has held the post of Principal Commissioner of Income-tax or any equivalent or higher post for two years and has performed judicial, quasi-judicial or adjudicating function for three years

Composition of Search-cum Selection Committee

Search-cum-Selection Committee for the post of the President, Vice President, Accountant Member or Judicial Member of the ITAT-

(i) Chief Justice of India or a Judge of the Supreme Court nominated by him – chairperson;

(ii) (a) In case of appointment of President, the Outgoing President, Income-tax Appellate Tribunalmember; or (b) In case of appointment of VicePresident or Accountant Member or Judicial Member, the President, Income-tax Appellate Tribunal -member ;

(iii) Secretary to the Government of India, Ministry of Law and Justice (Department of Legal Affairs) – member; and

(iv) Secretary to the Government of India, Ministry of Finance, (Department of Revenue) – member

Qualifications for appointment of CESTAT Members

The following qualifications has been prescribed for appointment of Members of the Customs, Excise and Service Tax Appellate Tribunal under the Customs Act 1962.

(1) A person shall not be qualified for appointment as President unless, –

(a) he is or has been a Judge of a High Court and who has completed not less than seven years of service as a Judge in a High Court; or

(b) he is the member of the Appellate Tribunal.

(2) A person shall not be qualified for appointment as a Judicial Member, unless, –

(a) he has, for a combined period of ten years, been a District Judge and Additional District Judge; or

(b) he has been a member of the Indian Legal Service and has held a post of Additional Secretary or any equivalent or higher post for two years; or

(c) he has been an advocate for twenty-five years.

(3) A person shall not be qualified for appointment as a Technical Member unless he has been a member of the Indian Revenue Service (Customs and Central Excise Service Group ‘A’) and has held the post of Principal Commissioner of Customs or Central Excise or any equivalent or higher post for two years and has performed judicial, quasi-judicial or adjudicating
function for three years.

Composition of Search-cum Selection Committee for CESTAT:

(i) Chief Justice of India or a Judge of the Supreme Court nominated by him – chairperson;

(ii) (a) In case of appointment of President, the Outgoing President of the Customs Excise and Service Tax Appellate Tribunal – member;
or
(b) In case of appointment of Judicial Member and Technical Member, the President, Customs and Excise and Service Tax Appellate Tribunal-member ;

(iii) Secretary to the Government of India, Ministry of Finance (Department of Revenue)-member;

(iv) Secretary to the Government of India, Ministry of Personal, Public Grievances and Pensions (Department of Personnel and Training) -member.

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