Central Empowered Committee

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Recently, the Supreme Court of India hands over its green watchdog committee, the Central Empowered Committee, to the Environment Ministry.

About Central Empowered Committee:

  • It was set up in 2002 (reconstituted in 2008) by the Supreme Court.
  • It served as a watchdog for issues pertaining to environmental conservation and compliance.
  • Recent changes: According to the union environment ministry’s notification, instead of an ad hoc body, CEC should be instituted as a permanent statutory body on environmental issues.
  • Composition of the new CEC
    • It will have a chairman with experience of 25 years in the field of environment, forests and wildlife or proven administrative experience of not less than 25 years in the central or state governments.
    • He will be nominated by the central government for tenure of three years.
    • Age limit 66 years and the level, not below the rank of additional secretary.
    • The member secretary will be a full-time serving officer of the government not below the rank of Deputy Inspector General of forests or director in the Government of India.
    • This person is required to have special knowledge in the field of environment, forests or wildlife, and experience of at least 12 years.
    • The member secretary too will be appointed by the Centre.
    • The three expert members will be one each from the fields of the environment, forests and wildlife with experience of at least 20 years.
    • They will also be nominated by the Centre for a tenure of three years.


Q1) What is a statutory body?

A statutory body is an organization or entity created and regulated by law through an act of legislation or statute passed by a government. These bodies are typically established to perform specific functions, provide services, or regulate certain activities in accordance with the legal framework defined by the governing legislation.

Source: Central Empowered Committee: SC hands over its green watchdog committee to the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change.