All You Need To Know About National Green Tribunal (NGT)

National Green Tribunal is an Environment court which is established in 2010 by National Green Tribunal Act 2010. This statutory body is formed for effective and quick disposal of cases related to forest conservation, environmental protection and other natural resources.

India is the third country after Australia and New Zealand in the world to establish an Environmental Tribunal. The major highlight of NDT is to disposal of all the appeals and applications within six months.

The National Green Tribunal has five places of sitting. New Delhi is the primary, and the other four are Bhopal, Pune, Kolkata and Chennai.

How NGT established?

At first in 1986 in the Oleum Gas Leak, and by the Law of commission of India in its 186th report in 2003 highlighted to form a special environment court by Supreme Court of India. The main reason to set up this special court was to speedy all environmental-related cases with the necessary technical knowledge and expertise.

The National Environmental Tribunal Act passed by Parliament in 1995. This act passed but never executed. Afterwards, in 1997 the National Environment Appellate Authority established. This authority functioned till October 2010 because of several problems such as the functioning of the Authority, limited mandate and vacancies that government did not fill. Later, this authority substituted with National Green Tribunal.

The National Green Tribunal set up under the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010. The first hearing of the Tribunal started in May 2011.

Structure Of National Green Tribunal

  • This NGT consists of the chairperson, the judicial members and expert members. They are appointed for a term of five years.
  • The central government in consultation appoints a chairperson in consultation with the Chief Justice of India.
  • The central government forms a committee that is responsible for selecting Judicial members and Expert members.
  • There are a minimum of 10 and a maximum of 20 full-time judicial members and expert members.

Power and Function of NGT

  • This tribunal has jurisdiction over all civil cases related to the Environment and its protection.
  • NGT also has appellate jurisdiction to hear the appeal
  • Regulating the procedure by itself without having to follow the principles of the civil procedure code. It follows the principle of justice rather.
  • To apply sustainable development at the time of giving orders. Also, it is applied to the rule that anyone who is polluting will have to pay.

Strengths of NGT

  • Over the year, NGT contributed a lot to environmental regulation. Taken strict action on deforestation and waste management.
  • NGT is a faster way to resolve environment-related disputes.
  • It reduced the burden of the supreme court in terms of the environment.
  • AS the chairperson and members are for five year time period and not reappointed hence they deliver judgement independently without any pressure.
  • NGT strictly observes EIA (Environment Impact Assessment).


  • Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 and the Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers Act, 2006 are not coming under NGT jurisdiction.
  • NGT’s decision somehow impacts economic growth. This is the major challenge for NGT.
  • criticised for not feasible decision to carry out within the given time frame.
  • Less human resources and financial resources are the main concern and fail to fulfil its objectives for disposal within 6 months.
  • Justice delivery is not smooth because of the limited number of benches.


We need to broaden the scope and provide autonomy for NGT to work effectively. However, we need to compromise economic growth somewhere for the sake of the environment.

Tell us your opinion about NGT and how it can work effectively?

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