New Delhi: The government or the Army personnel have no "vested, indefeasible or absolute right" to appeal against orders of the specially-constituted Armed Forces Tribunal, the Supreme Court has ruled.
A bench of justices T S Thakur and Gyan Sudha Mishra said
an appeal, if any, can be filed only with prior permission of
the Tribunal or the Supreme Court as provided under Sections
30 and 31 of the Armed Forces Tribunal Act, 2007.
The bench said Section 31 of the Act specifically provides
for an appeal to the Supreme Court but stipulates two distinct
routes for it.
"Section 31 (1) in no uncertain terms forbids grant of
leave to appeal to this Court unless the Tribunal certifies
that a point of law of general public importance is involved
in the decision.
This implies that Section 31 does not create
a vested, indefeasible or absolute right of filing an appeal
to this court against a final order or decision of the
Tribunal to this Court.
"Such an appeal must be preceded by the leave of the
Tribunal and such leave must, in turn, be preceded by a
certificate by the Tribunal that a point of law of general
public importance is involved in the appeal," said Justice
Thakur, writing the judgement for the bench.
The other option, the bench said, was to seek permission
of the apex court for filing an appeal.
The apex court passed the ruling while dismissing appeals
filed by the Centre and Krite Kumar Awasthi in two separate