Commission of Inquiry
Commission of Inquiry or Tribunal of Inquiry is a committee appointed finding out facts in matters of public importance. The commission will be given a 'definite matter of public importance' and will have per-determined start and end dates of its working in the notification. It will generally be headed by a Commissioner
- They are appointed by the Central Government or the State Government by way of notification in the Official Gazette.
- They are set up to maintain purity and integrity of the state political administration.
- It is purely a fact-finding machinery set up to collect information
- It does not have judicial veil or judicial powers.
- They have powers of a Civil Court but does not confer on it the status of a Court.
- Summoning and enforcement of attendance of any person from any part of India and examining him on oath.
- Requiring discovery and production of document
- Receiving evidence on affidavits.
- Requisitioning any public record or a copy thereof from any court of office.
- Issuing commissions for the examination of witnesses or documents
- Any other matter which may be prescribed.
- Its proceedings have the character of a judicial proceeding.
- The Commissioner is a public servant.
- It has no direct powers of Contempt of Court but it can record the facts constituting the offense and can forward the case to the competent Magistrate.
- Police firing
- Lock-up deaths
- Bomb explosions
- Bus, Train or air accidents
- Deaths due to illicit liquor etc
Related Cases / Recent Cases / Case Law
- Rama Krishna Dalmia vs Justice Tendolkar (AIR 1958 SC 538): Supreme Court rejected contention of Dalmias and approved the appointment of a commission in regard to complaints of business of Dalmias to the Central Government
- State of J&K vs Bakshi Gulam Mohamad (AIR 1967 SC 122): Duties of Chief Minister pertain to public and hence a Commission to inquire into his illegal and selfish earnings is valid.
- M Karunanidhi vs Union of India (AIR 1979 SC 899): Committee to look into the conduct of the affairs of the Karunanidhi's Government was upheld.