Security Appellate Tribunal to hear cases in the unavailability of a Technical Member

The Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) ruled that in the unavailability of a technical member, a bench of judicial members have inherent jurisdiction to hear the cases before it. The tribunal handles appeals from the Securities and Exchange Board of India’s orders.

A presiding officer, a judicial member, and a technical member constituted the tribunal. The technical member, on the other hand, withdrew on March 31, 2021. Since then, the tribunal’s bench has been composed of the presiding officer and a judicial member.

After the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) objected to the SAT’s inadequacy of a technical member, the issue arose. The SEBI asserted that the Tribunal must not entertain petitions until the Central government assigns a technical member.

The markets regulator postulated that the SAT Bench should have at least one technical member, as deemed necessary by the provision of Section 15L (2) (b) of the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992.

 The SAT highlighted in its ruling that the provision to Section 15L (2)(b) was sowing issues and required to be construed in accordance with other SEBI Act provisions of Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992.

The SAT further stated that under Section 15R, the operations before the Tribunal cannot be called into doubt in any regard due to a deficiency in the SAT’s structure. Furthermore, the SAT recommended that the Centre fill the positions of a technical member as soon as possible, as well as make the appropriate modifications and rectify the inconsistency induced by the proviso under Section 15L(2) (b).

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