National Company Law Tribunal Rules 2015
THE GAZETTE OF INDIA
MINISTRY OF CORPORATE AFFAIRS
New Delhi, ______________
G.S.R….E…. In exercise of the powers conferred by section 469 read with sections 408 and 468ofCompanies Act, 2013 the Central Government hereby makes the following rules namely:-
1. Short title and Commencement –
(1) These rules shall be called the National Company Law Tribunal Rules, 2015.
- They shall come into force on the date of their publication in the Official Gazette and different dates may be appointed for different rules for commencement under this chapter.
- The General Clauses Act, 1897 (10 of 1897) applies to the interpretation of these rules as it applies to the interpretation of a Central Act.
- The requirements with regard to any procedure to be followed before the Tribunal provided under any other rule made under the Act shall be in addition to the requirements provided under these rules.
- These rules shall also be applicable for the proceedings before the Tribunal in case of limited liability partnerships under LLP Act, 2008 or rules made thereunder and in case of any inconsistency between rules made under the LLP Act, 2008 and these rules, these rules shall apply.
In these rules, unless the context or subject- matter otherwise requires,
- “Act” means the Companies Act, 2013.
(2) “Address for service” shall mean the address furnished by a party or his authorized representative at which service of summons, notices or other processes may be effected by these rules;
(3) “Appellate Tribunal” means the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal constituted under section 410 of the Act;
- “Applicant” means a petitioner or an appellant or any other person or entity capable of making an application including an interlocutory application or a petition or an appeal under the Act:
Provided that in respect of the matters pertaining to “Revival and Rehabilitation of Sick Companies” under Chapter XIX of the Act, the term “Applicant” shall mean and include the following:
- ‘secured creditor (s)’ of a company representing 50% or more of its outstanding amount of debts, which the Company has failed to pay within 30 days of the notice of demand or to secure or compound it to the reasonable satisfaction of the creditor as per the provisions contained in sub-section (1) of section 253 of the Act,
- the company, on failing to pay the debt to its secured creditors to the extent of 50% or more of its outstanding debts within 30 days of the receipt of notice of demand or to secure or compound it to the reasonable satisfaction of the secured creditor.
- the Central Government or the Reserve Bank of India or a State Government or a public financial institution or a State Level Institution or a scheduled bank being an authority which has made a reference in respect of sick company to the Tribunal under sub-section (5) of section 253.
- "Annexure" means an Annexure to these rules;
(8) “Bench” means a Bench of the Tribunal constituted under section 419 of the Act and includes Circuit Benches constituted by the President with prior approval of the Central Government to sit at such other geographical locations as may be necessary having regard to requirements.
- “Body Corporate” means the body corporate as defined in sub-section (11) of section2 of the Act, and includes:
(i) a limited liability partnership registered under the Limited Liability Partnership Act, 2008;
(ii) a limited liability partnership incorporated outside India;
- “Central Registry” means the registry in which all the applications or petitions and documents are received electronically by the Registrar for allocation to the concerned Bench of the Tribunal for disposal;
- “Certified” means in relation to a copy as hereunder:
- Certified as provided in section 76 of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872; or
- Certified as provided in section 76 of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872; or
- A certified copy issued by the Registrar of Companies under the Act:
Provided certified copy may also include a copy of documentas may be a downloaded version from e-registry under MCA 21 or any other similar authorized portals or Dedicated Portal Online as may be given name thereto by the Central Government ininstance or aphoto copy of original pertaining to any company registered with the Office of the Registrar of Companies of the concerned state duly certified by an Advocate or other professional
- “Certified by Tribunal” means in relation to a copy, certified to be a true copy issued by the Registry of the Tribunal or of a bench of the Tribunal under its hand and seal and as provided in Section 76 of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872;
- “Certifying Authority” means a person who has been granted a license to issue a Digital Signature Certificate under section 24 of the Information Technology Act, 2000 (21 of 2000);
- “Chairperson”, “Judicial Member”, “Member”, “President” and “Technical Member” of the Tribunal or Appellate Tribunal shall have the same meanings as provided in section 407 of the Act;
- “Court” means the court as defined in sub-section (29) of section 2 of the Act;
- “Dedicated Portal Online” refers to an “Hyper Text Transfer Protocol” for the purpose of electronic transmission of documents to the Tribunal for hearing and disposal in pursuance of the provisions of the Act and includes MCA-21 portal;
- “Digital signature” means authentication of any electronic record by a subscriber by means of an electronic method or procedure in accordance with the provisions of section 3 of the Information Technology Act, 2000 and includes a graphic image of a handwritten signature;
- “Digital Signature Certificate” means a Digital Signature Certificate issued under sub-section (4) of section 35 of the Information Technology Act, 2000;
- “Document” means summons , notice, requisition, a pleading, plea, motion, application, request, exhibit, brief, memorandum of law, paper, or any other instrument in paper form or electronic form and other legal process, and registers, whether issued, sent or kept in pursuance of the Act and Rules made there under or any other Act or otherwise; but, does not include orders of the Tribunal;
- “EDGAR (Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis and Retrieval) Filer Manual” means the current version of the manual prepared by the Tribunal setting out the technical format requirements for an electronic filing of Application or other documents with the Tribunal;
- "Electronic Format" means the computerized format of a document prepared in accordance with Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis, and Retrieval (EDGAR);
- "Electronic Filer" means an Applicant who files Application or other documents with the Tribunal electronically;
- “Electronic Filing” is a process by which a filer files a document with the Registry of the Tribunal by means of an online computer transmission of the document in electronic form other than by means of fax or e-mail.
- “Electronic order” means a computerized, non-paper Tribunal order that a Member or Members of the Tribunal signs by applying his or her digitized signature to the order.
- “Electronic service” is a method of serving a document upon a party by electronically transmitting the document to that party’s e-mail address.
- “Electronic Registry” means an electronic repository or storage system which receives, stores, protects, preserves and retrieves an application or a Petition or any reply and rejoinder to the application, petition and other addendum to the pleadings in electronic form by the Tribunal;
- “Fee” means the amount payable in pursuance of the provisions of the Act, and these rules for any petition or application or interlocutory application or a document or for certified copy of document or order of the Tribunal or such other paper as may be specified in Schedule of Fees to these rules and includes any modifications as may be made thereto or any fee as prescribed for electronic filing of documents to the Tribunal by these rules;
- “Filer” means a person including an authorized representative of that person or any party to the proceedings who files any document with the Tribunal in relation to case filed under the Act, or any rules there under.
- “Filed” means filed in the office of the Registry of the Tribunal;
- “Form” means a form specified in Annexure –A;
- “Party” means any person(s) or entity who files a petition or an application before the Tribunal and includes a respondent(s), the Registrar of Companies or the Regional Director or Ministry of Corporate Affairs or central government or state government or official liquidator and any person who has a right under the Act, or the Reserve Bank of India Act 1934 (2 of 1934) to make suggestions or submissions or objections or file reply;
- “Petition” means a petition or an application or an Appeal or a Complaint in pursuance of which any proceeding is commenced before the Tribunal.
- “Person(s) Interested” means a shareholder, creditor, employee, transferee company and other company concerned in relation to the term or context referred to in relevant provisions of the Act;
- “Pleadings” means and includes application including interlocutory applications, petitions, appeal, revisions, reply, rejoinders, statements, counter claim, additional statement supplementing the original applications and reply statements including electronic form as prescribed by these rules and as may be permitted by the Tribunal;
- "Pre-fill" means the automated process of data input by the computer system from the database maintained in electronic registry of either the Tribunal or Ministry of Corporate Affairs;
- “Prescribed” means prescribed by these rules; and ‘prescribed charges’ and ‘prescribed fees’ mean charges or fees prescribed by these rules and where they are not so prescribed, as may be decided by the Tribunal;
- “Prescribed period” means that the respective or relevant period to be reckoned as defined in the Limitation Act, 1963.
- “Reference" means a reference within the meaning of Rule 106 of these Rules;
- “Registrar of Companies” includes Additional Registrar, Joint Registrar, Deputy Registrar or an Assistant Registrar.
- “Registrar” in relation to the Tribunal, means the Registrar appointed to the Principal Bench and in relation to each of the Benches of the Tribunal shall mean an officer of the Central Government so appointed or designated as Registrar or in his absence such other officer of the Tribunal or Bench to whom the powers and functions of the Registrar be delegated.
- “Registry” means the Registry of the Tribunal or any of its Benches, as the case may be which keeps records of the applications and documents relating thereto
- “Reserve Bank” means the Reserve Bank of India and includes its branches and agencies as defined in the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934;
- “The rules” mean these rules and include the Rules of the Tribunal regulating the Electronic Filing of Documents and forms prescribed thereto.
- “Sealed” means sealed with the seal of the Tribunal.
- “Secretary" means Secretary to the Tribunal and in the absence of Secretary, such other officer of the Tribunal to whom the powers and functions of the Secretary be delegated.
- “Service of Notice or Document” includes the electronic service in addition to other modes of services.
- “Secured Creditor” means and includes bank or financial institution or any consortium or group of banks or financial institutions which have lent any money to the company and subject to the compliance with the relevant provisions of the Act includes the following-
(iii)any person in whose favour a charge is created on any asset or assets of a company whether singularly or jointly.
(50) “Transferred Application” or “Transferred Petition” means proceedings which have been transferred to the Tribunal from High Court, or or any other court or Tribunal as provided in section 434 of the Act, and shall also include the matters in respect of which the schemes for revival have been sanctioned as per the provisions of Sick Industrial Companies Act, 1985
- “Tribunal” means the National Company Law Tribunal constituted under section 408 of the Act, and includes its Benches;
- expressed in singular may be understood as plural or vice versa if the context so warrants. Likewise, ‘He/his’ may be referred to ‘She/her’ or vice versa. Petition may also be construed as application or appeal or complaint vice versa depending upon the reference which warrants so.
- The words and expressions used in these rules but not defined herein and defined in the Act shall have the same meanings, respectively assigned to them in the Act.
- Till the implementation of the E-filing system by the Tribunal the documents including petitions, applications and other documents may be filed physically;
Powers to determine procedure in certain circumstances.
3. General Procedure
(1) In a situation not provided for in these rules, the Tribunal may, for reasons to be recorded in writing, determine the procedure in a particular case in accordance with the principles of natural justice.
(2) The general heading in all proceedings before the Tribunal, in all advertisements and notices shall be in FORM NO. NCT. 4.
(3) Every petition or application or reference shall be filed in form as provided in FORM NO. NCT. 1 with attachments thereto accompanied by FORM NO. NCT.2 and in case of an interlocutory application, the same shall be filed in Form No. NCT. 1 accompanied by such attachments thereto along with Form No. NCT. 3. Every petition or application including interlocutory application shall be verified by an affidavit in Form No. NCT.6. Notice to be issued by the Tribunal to the opposite party shall be in Form No. NCT 5.
4. Territorial Jurisdiction of the Tribunal and its Benches:
(1) The National Company Law Tribunal shall have a Principal Bench at New Delhi and other Benches as may be specified by the Central Government by notification.
(2) The applicant may, by way of a separate application, apply to the President and the President may thereupon for reasons to be recorded, direct a Bench other than the Bench which has territorial jurisdiction to adjudicate upon it or other than the Bench before which an application or a petition has been filed to hear such application or petition, and issue such orders or directions as may be necessary for the transfer of the application or petition. The President of the Tribunal may delegate the power to adjudicate upon such transfer application to any member of Bench(s) other that the Bench which has territorial jurisdiction to adjudicate upon it or other than the Bench before which an application or a petition has been filed to hear such application or petition.
(3) Notwithstanding anything contained under sub-rule (2), where a petition or application is accepted by the Registry or transferred from any Bench of Company Law Board or Board for Industrial and Financial Reconstruction or Appellate Authority for Industrial or Financial Reconstruction or High Court to a Bench of the Tribunal and thereafter if any objection on territorial jurisdiction is raised by any party(s), then the Bench of the Tribunal to whom such petition or application has been transferred shall have the powers to determine whether it has the territorial jurisdiction over the matter and in case it decides that it does not have territorial jurisdiction over the matter then for reasons to be recorded, it shall direct the transfer of the matter to the appropriate Bench having territorial jurisdiction over the matter, subject to the orders of the President.
(4) The President shall constitute the Special Benches as laid down under section 419 (4) of the Act at the seat of the Principal Bench or such other Benches as may be considered necessary.
Provided that the provisions of sub-rule (2) to (4) shall apply mutatis mutandis to the Special Bench or Benches constituted under this sub-rule.
5. Advertisement detailing petition.
(1) Where any application, petition or reference is required to be advertised, it shall, unless the Tribunal otherwise orders, or these rules otherwise provide, be advertised in Form No. NCT 3A, not less than fourteen days before the date fixed for hearing, at least oncein a vernacular newspaper in the principal vernacular language of the district in which the registered office of the proposed company is situated, and circulating in that district, and at least once in English language in an English newspaper circulating in that district.
(2) Every such advertisement shall state:
- the date on which the application, petition/ reference was presented,
- the name and address of the applicant petitioner and his authorized representative, if any;
- the nature and substance of application, petition/ reference;
- the date fixed for hearing;
- a statement to the effect that any person whose interest is likely to be affected by the proposed petition or who intends either to oppose or support the petition/ reference at the hearing shall send a notice of his intention to the petitioner or his authorized representative so as to reach him not later than two days previous to the day fixed for hearing.
(3) Where the advertisement is being given by the company, then the same shall also be placed on the website of the company, if any.
(4) An affidavit shall be filed to the Tribunal in, not less than 3 days before the date fixed for hearing, stating whether the petition has been advertised in accordance with this rule and whether the notices, if any, have been duly served upon the persons required to be served:
Provided that such an affidavit shall be accompanied with such proof of advertisement or of the service, as may be available.
(5) Where the requirements of this rule or the direction of the Tribunal, as regards the advertisement and service of petition, are not complied with, the Tribunal may either dismiss the petition or give such further directions as it thinks fit.
(6) The Tribunal may, if it thinks fit, and upon an application being made by the party, may dispense with any advertisement required to be published under this rule.
6. Maintenance of Cash Register:
(1) If any payment has been received by way of Indian postal orders or demand drafts or in cash by the Registry, the transaction shall be entered immediately by the Registration Clerk on their receipt side in a Cash Register kept for the purpose.
(2) On every next working day or the last working day of the week, the payments received during such day or week by way of Indian postal orders or demand drafts shall be transmitted by the Registration Clerk to the concerned official vested with the work pertaining to the Cashier who after scrutiny and verification shall acknowledge the receipt of all moneys in the Cash Register.
(3) The official under sub-rule (2) and (3) shall deposit all payments received by way of Indian postal order or demand draft or cash in the Bank account of the Tribunal.
7. Notice to Opposite Party-
(1) The Tribunal shall issue notice to the respondent to show cause against the application or petition on a date of hearing to be specified in the manner as prescribed. Such notice in Form No. NCT.5 shall be accompanied by a copy of the application with supporting documents.
(2) If the respondent does not appear on the date specified in the notice in Form No. NCT.5 or appears and admits, the Tribunal, after affording reasonable opportunity to the Respondent, shall forthwith proceed ex-parte to dispose of the application.
(3) If the respondent contests to the notice received under sub-rule (1), it may, either in person or through an agent or legal counsel, file a reply accompanied with an affidavit and along with copies of such documents on which it relies, with an advance service to the petitioner or applicant, to the Registry in the manner as prescribed under these rules before the date of hearing and such reply and copies of documents shall form part of the record.
8. Service of Notices and Processes Issued by the Tribunal:
(1) Any notice or process to be issued by the Tribunal may be served in electronic form at the valid e-mail address as provided in the petition or application or in the reply.
(2) Such notice or process if to be served physically may be served in any one of the following modes as may be directed by the Tribunal:
(a) by hand delivery through a process server or respective authorized representative;
(b) by registered post or speed post with acknowledgment due; or
(c) service by the party himself.
(3) Where a notice issued by the Tribunal is served by the party himself by "hand delivery", he shall file with the Registrar or such other person duly authorised by the Registrar in this behalf, the acknowledgment together with an affidavit of service and in case of service by registered post or by speed post, file with the Registrar, or such other person duly authorised by the Registrar in this behalf, an affidavit of service of notice alongwith the proof of delivery.
(4) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-rules (1) and (2), the Tribunal may after taking into account the number of respondents and their place of residence or work or service could not be effected in any manner and other circumstances, direct that notice of the petition or application shall be served upon the respondents in any other manner, including any manner of substituted service, as it appears to the Tribunal just and convenient.
(5) A notice or process may also be served on an authorized representative of the applicant or the respondent, as the case may be, in any proceeding or on any person authorized to accept a notice or a process, and such service on the authorized representative shall be deemed to be a proper service.
(6) Where the Tribunal directs a service under sub-rule (4), such amount of charges, as may be determined by the Tribunal from time to time, but not exceeding the actual charges incurred in effecting the service, shall be deposited with the registry of the Tribunal by the petitioner or applicant.
9. Filing of Affidavit
(1) The Tribunal may direct the parties to give evidence, if any, by affidavit.
(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-rule (1), where the Tribunal considers it necessary in the interest of natural justice, it may order cross-examination of any deponent either through Information and Communication Technology (ICT) facilities like video conferencing or otherwise as may be decided by the Tribunal, on an application moved by any party on the points of conflict.
(3) Every affidavit to be filed before the Tribunal shall be in Form –No. NCT.7.
10. Production of additional evidence before the Bench.
(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in Rule 9, the parties to the proceedings shall not be entitled to produce before the Bench additional evidence, either oral or documentary, which was in the possession or knowledge but was not produced before the Inspector (s), appointed by the Central Government for the purpose of investigating the affairs of the concerned company (s), during investigation under Chapter XIV of the Act, but if the Bench requires any document to be produced or any witness to be examined or any affidavit to be filed to enable it to pass orders or for any other substantial cause, or if the Inspector (s) so appointed for the said purpose has not given sufficient opportunity to the party to adduce evidence, the Bench, for reasons to be recorded, may allow such document to be produced or witness to be examined or affidavit to be filed or may allow such evidence to be adduced.
(2) Such document may be produced or such witness examined or such evidence adduced either before the Bench or before such authority as the Bench may direct.
(3) If the document is directed to be produced or witness examined or evidence adduced before any authority, he or she shall comply with the direction of the Bench and after compliance send the document, the record of the deposition of the witness or the record of the evidence adduced, to the Bench.
(4) Additional evidence/document shall be made available by the Bench to the parties to the proceedings other than the party adducing the evidence and they shall be afforded an opportunity to rebut the contents of the said additional evidence.
11. Filing of Reply and other Documents by the Respondents:
(1) Each respondent may file his reply to the petition or the application and copies of the documents, either in person or through an agent or legal counsel, with the registry as specified by the Tribunal. A copy of the reply or the application and the copies of other documents shall be forthwith served on the applicant by the respondent.
(2) The reply or documents filed under sub-rule (1), the respondent shall specifically admit, deny or rebut the facts stated by the applicant in his petition or application and state such additional facts as may be found necessary in his reply.
12. Filing of Rejoinder:
Where the respondent states such additional facts as may be necessary for the just decision of the case, the Bench may allow the petitioner to file a rejoinder to the reply filed by the respondent, with an advance copy to be served upon the respondent.
13. Power of the Bench to call for further information/evidence.
(1)The Bench may, before passing orders on the petition or application, require the parties or any one or more of them, to produce such further documentary or other evidence as it may consider necessary:
(a) for the purpose of satisfying itself as to the truth of the allegations made in the petition or application; or
(b) for ascertaining any information which, in the opinion of the Bench, is necessary for the purpose of enabling it to pass orders in the petition or application.
(2) Without prejudice to sub-rule (1), the Bench may, for the purpose of inquiry or investigation, as the case may be, admit such documentary and other mode of recordings in electronic form including e-mails, books of accounts, book or paper, written communications, statements, contracts, electronic certificates and such other similar mode of transactions as may legally be permitted to take into account of those as admissible as evidence under the relevant laws.
(3) Where any party preferring / contesting a petition of oppression and mismanagement raises the issue of forgery or fabrication of any statutory records, then it shall be at the liberty to move an appropriate application for forensic examination. The Bench hearing the matter may, for reasons to be recorded, either allow the application and send the disputed records for opinion of Central Forensic Science Laboratory at the cost of the party alleging fabrication of records, or dismiss such application.
14. Hearing of petition or applications:
(1) The Tribunal shall notify to the parties the date and place of hearing of the petition or application in such manner as the President or a Member may, by general or special order, direct.
(2) Where at any stage prior to the hearing of the petition or application the applicant desires to withdraw his petition or application, he shall make an application to that effect to the Tribunal, and the Tribunal on hearing the applicant and if necessary such other party(s) arrayed as opposite parties in the petition or the application or otherwise, may permit such withdrawal upon imposing such costs as it may deem fit and proper for the Tribunal in the interests of the justice.
15. Rights of a party to appear before the Tribunal.
(1) Every party may appear before a Tribunal in person or through an authorized representative, duly authorized in writing in this behalf. The Authorized Representatives shall make an appearance through the filing of Memorandum of Appearance or a power of attorney in Form No. NCT. 12 representing the respective parties to the proceedings. In case of legal practioner/ advocate, he may make appearance by filing Vakalatnama
(2) For the purposes of sub-rule (1), a party may, in writing, authorize an Advocate or a Company Secretary in practice or a Chartered Accountant in practice or Cost Accountant in practice, duly authorized in writing to function as a representative of such party. The Central Government, the Regional Director or the Registrar of Companies or Official Liquidator may authorise an officer or an Advocate to represent in the proceedings before the Tribunal. The Company Liquidator or provisional liquidator appointed from the panel shall also make appearance in person.
(3) The officer authorized by the Central Government or the Regional Director or the Registrar of Companies or the Official Liquidator should be an officer not below the rank of officers of Junior Time Scale or may authorise company prosecutor.
(4) During any proceedings before the Tribunal, it may for the purpose of its knowledge, may call upon the Registrar of Companies to submit information on the affairs of the company only on the basis of information available in the MCA 21 portal. Reasons for such directions shall be recorded in writing.
(5) There shall be no audio or video recording of the Bench proceedings by the parties or their authorized representatives.
15A. Registration of Authorized Representative’s clerks-
(1) No clerk employed by an authorised representative shall act as such before the Tribunal or be permitted to have access to the records and obtain copies of the orders of a Bench of the Tribunal in which the Authorised Representative ordinarily appears, unless his name is entered in the Register of Clerks maintained by the said Bench. Such clerk shall be known as a "Registered Clerk".
(2) An authorised representative desirous of registering his clerk shall make a application to the Registrar in Form NCT 10. On such application being allowed by the Registrar, his name shall be entered in the Register of clerks.
(3) An identity card shall be issued to a Registered Clerk of the Authorised Representative on payment of fee as may be prescribed by way of Indian postal order or demand draft drawn in favour of the Registrar.
16. Oath to the witness:
The Tribunal Officer or the Tribunal Commissioner as appointed by the Tribunal, as the case may be, shall administer the following oath to a witness:-
“I do swear in the name of God that what I shall state shall be the truth and nothing but the truth.”
17. Consequence of non-appearance of Applicant:
(1) Where on the date fixed for hearing of the petition or application or on any other date to which such hearing may be adjourned, the applicant does not appear when the petition or the application is called for hearing, the Tribunal may, in its discretion, either dismiss the application for default or hear and decide it on merit.
(2) Where the petition or application has been dismissed for default and the applicant files an application within thirty days from the date of dismissal and satisfies the Tribunal that there was sufficient cause for his non-appearance when the petition or the application was called for hearing, the Tribunal shall make an order restoring the same:
Provided that where the case was disposed of on merits the decision shall not be re-opened except by way of review.
18. Ex-parte Hearing and Disposal of petition or Application
(1) Where on the date fixed for hearing the petition or application or on any other date to which such hearing may be adjourned, the applicant appears and the respondent does not appear when the petition or the application is called for hearing, the Tribunal may adjourn the hearing or hear and decide the petition or the application ex-parte.
(2) Where a petition or an application has been heard ex-parte against a respondent or respondents, such respondent or respondents may apply to the Tribunal for an order to set it aside and if such respondent or respondents satisfy the Tribunal that the notice was not duly served, or that he or they were prevented by any sufficient cause from appearing (when the petition or the application was called) for hearing, the Tribunal may make an order setting aside the ex-parte hearing as against him or them upon such terms as it thinks fit.
Provided that where the ex-parte hearing of the petition or application is of such nature that it cannot be set aside as against one respondent only, it may be set aside as against all or any of the other respondents also.
19. Power to Pass Order:
The Registry shall send a certified copy of final order passed to the parties concerned free of cost.
20. Power to Regulate the Procedure:
In exercise of the powers conferred on it under sub-section (1) of section 424 of the Act, the Tribunal may regulate its own procedure in accordance with the rules of natural justice, equity and fair play, for the purpose of discharging its functions under the Act.
21. Summoning of Witnesses and Method of Recording Evidence-
- If a petition or an application is presented by any party to the proceedings for summoning of witnesses, the Tribunal shall issue summons for the appearance of such witnesses unless it considers that their appearance is not necessary for the just decision of the case.
(2) Where summons are issued by the Tribunal under sub-rule (1) to any witness to give evidence or to produce any document, the person so summoned shall be entitled to such travelling and daily allowance sufficient to defray the travelling and other expenses as may be determined by the Registrar which shall be deposited by the party as decided by the Registrar.
22. Substitution of Legal Representatives-
(1) Where a party to a proceeding pending before a Bench dies or is adjudged insolvent or, in the case of a company, being wound up, the proceeding shall not abate and may be continued by or against the executor, administrator or other legal representative of the parties or by or against the assignee, receiver or liquidator, as the case may be.
(2) In the case of death of a party during the pendency of the proceedings before Tribunal, the legal representative (s) of the deceased party may apply within ninety days of the date of such death for being brought on record.
(3) Where no petition or application is received from the legal representatives within the period specified in sub-rule (2), the proceedings shall abate:
Provided that for good and sufficient reasons shown, the Tribunal may allow substitution of the legal representatives of the deceased at any time before disposing the appeal on merits.
23. Assessors or Valuers-
(1) In any enquiry into a claim, the Tribunal may call in the aid of assessors, not exceeding two in number, who possess any technical or special knowledge with respect to any matter before the Tribunal for the purpose of assisting the Tribunal.
(2) An assessor or valuer shall perform such functions as the Tribunal may direct.
(3) The remuneration, if any, to be paid to an assessor or valuer shall in every case be determined by the Tribunal and be paid by it in the manner as may be specified by the Tribunal.
24. Pleadings before the Tribunal
No pleadings, subsequent to the reply, shall be presented except by the leave of the Tribunal upon such terms as the Tribunal may think fit.
25. Power to impose Costs:
The Tribunal may, in its discretion, pass such order (s) in respect of imposing costs on the defaulting party as it may deem fit.
26. Order to be passed and signed-
(1) The Tribunal, after hearing the applicant and respondent, shall make and pronounce an order either at once or, as soon as thereafter as may be practicable but not later than thirty days from the final hearing.
(2) Every order of the Tribunal shall be in writing and shall be signed and dated by the President or Member or Members constituting the Bench which heard the case and pronounced the order.
(3) A certified copy of every order passed by the Tribunal shall be given to the parties.
(4) The Tribunal, may transmit order made by it to any court for enforcement, on application made by either of the parties to the order or suo motu.
(5) Every order or judgment or notice shall bear the seal of the Tribunal.
27. Application for Execution:
For execution of order passed by the Tribunal, the holder of an order shall make an application to the Tribunal in Form NCT. 8.
28. Issue of Process of Execution-
(1) On receipt of an application under Rule 27 the Tribunal shall issue a process for execution of its order in such Form as provided in the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908.
(2) The Tribunal shall consider objection, if any, raised by the respondent and make such order as it may deem fit and shall issue attachment or recovery warrant in such Form as provided in the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, as the case may be.
29. Effect of non-compliance.
Failure to comply with any requirement of these rules shall not invalidate any proceeding, merely by reason of such failure, unless the Tribunal is of the view that such failure has resulted in miscarriage of justice.
30. Procedure for imposition of penalty under the Act.
(1) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in any rules or regulations framed under the Act, no order or direction imposing a penalty under the Act shall be made unless the person or the company or a party to the proceeding, during proceedings of the Bench, has been given a show cause notice and reasonable opportunity to represent his or her or its case before the Bench or any officer authorized in this behalf.
(2) In case the Bench decides to issue show cause notice to any person or company or a party to the proceedings, as the case may be, under sub-rule (1), the Registrar/Registry shall issue a show cause notice giving not less than fifteen days asking for submission of the explanation in writing within the period stipulated in the notice.
(3) The Bench shall, on receipt of the explanation, and after oral hearing if granted, proceed to decide the matter of imposition of penalty on the facts and circumstances of the case.
31. Empanelment of special authorized representatives by the Tribunal.
(1) The Tribunal may draw up a panel of legal practitioners or company secretaries in practice or chartered accountant in practice or cost accountant in practice or valuer or such other experts as may be required by the Tribunal to assist in proceedings before the Tribunal or Appellate Tribunal.
(2) The President may call upon any of the persons from panel under sub-rule (1) for assistance in the proceedings before the Bench, if so required.
(3) The remuneration payable and other allowances and compensation admissible to such persons shall be specified in consultation with the Tribunal.
32. Working Hours of the Tribunal:
Except on Saturdays, Sundays and other public holidays, the office of the Tribunal shall, subject to any order made by the President, remain open from 9-30 a.m. to 6-00 p.m.
33. Sitting hours of the Tribunal:
The sitting hours of the Tribunal shall ordinarily be from 10-30 a.m. to 1-15 p.m. and 2-15 p.m. to 4-30 p.m. subject to any general or special order made by the President or Members or any Member concerned with the prior approval of the President.
34. Seal and emblem:
The official seal and the emblem of the Tribunal shall be such as the Central Government may, in consultation with the President, specify and the same shall be kept in the custody of the Registry.
35. Preservation of Record:
- All necessary documents and records relating to petitions or applications dealt with by the Tribunal shall be stored or maintained as provided in these rules and other physical records kept in a record room shall be preserved for a period of five years after the passing of the final order.
- Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-rule (1), the electronic record of the petitions or applications dealt with by the Tribunal including the orders and directions passed by the Tribunal, shall be maintained by the Registry of the Tribunal for a period of fifteen years after the passing of the final order.
36. Inherent powers of the Tribunal:
Nothing in these rules shall be deemed to limit or otherwise affect the inherent powers of the Tribunal to make such orders or give such directions as may be necessary for meeting the ends of justice or to prevent abuse of the process of the Tribunal.
37. Retention, Preservation and Destruction of Records:
(1) The Record Keeper or any other officer so designated shall be responsible for the records consigned to the Record Room. He shall scrutinize the records received by him within three days and prepare an index.
(2) On the expiry of the period for preservation of the records specified under sub-rule (1) to Rule 35, the Registrar shall weed out the record.
(1) In respect of the several matters mentioned in Annexure B, there shall be paid fees as prescribed in Schedule of Fees of these rules:
Provided that no fee shall be payable or shall be liable to be collected on a petition or application filed or referencemade by the Registrar of Companies, Regional Director or by any officer on behalf of the Central Government:
(2) In respect of every interlocutory application there shall be paid fees as prescribed in Schedule of Fees of these rules:
Provided that no fee shall be payable or shall be liable to be collected on an application filed by the Registrar of Companies, Regional Director or by an officer on behalf of the Central Government.
(3) In respect of a petition or application filed or references made before the Principal Bench or the Bench of the Tribunal, fees payable under these rules shall be paid by means of a bank draft drawn in favour of the Pay and Accounts Officer, Ministry of Corporate Affairs, New Delhi/Kolkata/Chennai /Mumbai as the case may be or by electronic mode.
E-filing of applications, petitions or such other documents as provided under these Rules
These rules govern the electronic filing and service of petitions, applications or other documents as provided under these Rules in respect of any proceeding before the Tribunal, by any method other than fax filing and they are made in consonance with the provisions provided in the Act regarding electronic filing so as to supplement thereto to enable the filer to upload documents electronically through the Electronic filing service providers as may be notified by the Central Government.
40. Effect on Existing Acts and Rules
Notwithstanding anything contained in any other Act for the time being in force concerning the filing of electronic documents, these rules shall be in addition to the provisions of the Act, and Information Technology Act, 2000 and such other analogous rules made thereunder but not in derogation thereto.
Provided that in case of any conflict or contrast with any rules framed under other provisions of the Act or other Acts or respective rules as prescribed for electronic filing, these rules shall prevail.
41. Electronic Filing Wholly Compulsory and Mandatory unless Ordered by Tribunal
- Except as provided by sub-rule (b) below, the electronic filing and serving of Tribunal documents shall be mandatory and compulsory.
- Upon the motion of a party and for cause shown, the Tribunal may order the parties in a particular case to manually file and serve Tribunal documents, which are otherwise required to be electronically filed in a manner as may be directed by the Tribunal.
- The rules made under this Part for electronic filing shall come into force on a date specifically notified by the Central Government in the Official Gazette for their purpose. Till the implementation of e-filing system, filing of applications or petitions shall be continued to be filed manually.
- Notwithstanding anything contained in these rules, the Central Government may grant exemption from filing documents electronically either wholly or partly or put on hold the implementation of the rules of this Part completely and such other related provisions in these rules until a period or thereafter until such extended period as may be specified by way of notification in the Official Gazette.
- Save as otherwise provided in these rules, in case such exemption has been granted, the documents required to be filed electronically shall manually be filed and wherever appearing, the relevant rules stipulating electronic or e-filing in these rules may be understood for manual filing only.
This part of these rules applies only to the filing of documents with the Registry and do not apply to the filing of documents directly with a Member or Members of the Tribunal if the respective persons or entity has been directed to file any document before the Bench directly.
44. Documents Containing Signatures
(a) A document that is required to be verified, notarized, acknowledged, sworn to, or made under oath shall be electronically filed only as a scanned image.
(b) Where a filer has electronically filed a scanned image under this rule, the Tribunal may require the filer to properly file the document in a physical form with the Registry. The Registry may allow such documents for the inspection.
45. “DEDICATED PORTAL ONLINE”
- “Dedicated Portal Online” is a Portal as defined in sub-rule (16) of rule 2 through which all the parties or Central or State Government agencies and local government’s bodies may electronically send and receive documents to or from the Tribunal and make required payments.
- To electronically file documents, filers must follow registration and such procedures as outlined by “Dedicated Portal” or otherwise as prescribed by the Central Government.
- Filers do not electronically file documents directly with the Registry. Rather, filers indirectly file a document with the Registry by electronically transmitting the document to “Dedicated Portal Online” which then electronically transmits the document to the Registry. A filer filing or serving a document must have a valid account with Dedicated Portal Online.
- Consistent with standards promulgated by the Central Government in coordination with such other authority or committee on Information Technology, the Dedicated Portal Online, will specify the permissible formats for documents that will be electronically filed and electronically served.
- Filers who electronically file documents will pay the filing fees to the Registry indirectly through the “Dedicated Portal Online” by a method set forth by “Dedicated Portal Online.”
- Upon completion of the initial registration procedures, each filer will be issued a confidential and unique electronic identifier. Each filer must use his or her identifier in order to electronically file documents. Use of the identifier to electronically file documents constitutes a “digital signature” on the particular document.
(b) The attachment of a digital signature on an electronically filed document is deemed to constitute a signature on the document for purposes of signature requirements imposed by relevant provisions of the Act, or any other law. The person whose name appears first in the signature block of an initial pleading is deemed to be the attorney in charge for the purposes of fulfilling all the requirements provided under the Act, or “Dedicated Portal” online or such other Machine Mode Project as designed, developed and maintained by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs or the Central Government for the purpose under these rules or Information Technology Act, 2000 or such other amended Acts or relevant rules as provided from time to time, unless otherwise designated. The digital signature on any document filed is deemed to be the signature of the Attorney or the Authorised Representative, whose name appears first in the signature block of the document for the said purpose.
(c) A digital signature on an electronically-filed document is deemed to constitute a signature by the filer for the purpose of authorizing the payment of document filing fees.
47. Time for Document Filing
(a) A filer may electronically transmit a document to “Dedicated Portal Online” 24 hours in a day and every day of the year, except during brief periods of Central Government approved scheduled maintenance which will occur on any fixed day as informed at the respective website.
(b) Upon sending an electronically filed document with the Registry by a filer, the filer is deemed to have delivered the document to the Registry and, subject to sub rule (e), the document is deemed to be filed.
(c) As soon as possible but not later than three working days after receiving a document from “Dedicated Portal Online”, the Registry shall examine the document for acceptance or if not, to decide otherwise.
(d) If the document is accepted for filing, the Registry shall note the date and time of filing which, with the exception of sub-rule (e) below, shall be the date and time that the filer transmitted the document. The Registry shall inform through “Dedicated Portal Online” its action w