Madurai : An interim stay has been placed on the order issued by a single judge prohibiting increase in electricity tariff until the post of legal member is filled in the Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission.
Tamil Nadu Spinning Mills Association Chief Counsel K. Venkatachalam, Aruna Alloys Steel Company Managing Director Arun Arunachalam, Sripathy Paper and Boards Company General Manager G. Sreenivasan filed a petition in the High Court Branch: “The Chairman and 2 members (Technical Member, Legal Department) of the Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission Member) Currently there are only Chairman and Technical Member No Legal Member.
In this case, a petition was filed in the Regulatory Commission on behalf of the Electricity Board seeking permission to increase the electricity tariff of Tamil Nadu. The regulatory authority has accepted the petition for hearing. Public opinion meetings are currently being held. Thus, until the post of member of the legal department is filled in the Regulatory Commission, it should be prohibited to take a decision regarding the fee hike and to hold a hearing meeting,” the petition said.
Justice G.R. Swaminathan, after hearing this, ordered the Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission to issue a final order on the electricity tariff hike petition filed by the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board until a member of the legal department is appointed.
In this case, an appeal petition was filed in the High Court branch on behalf of the Tamil Nadu government seeking to quash the order of the single judge. In it, “The single judge has ordered a ban on issuing a final order on the petition related to the increase in electricity charges until a legal member is appointed in the Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission.
When a post becomes vacant, steps are taken to select suitable persons for that vacancy. Based on that notification has been issued to fill the vacant post of Legal Member in Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission. Selection of suitable person is going on. Without considering this, his judge has prohibited him from issuing a final order on the electricity bill demand petition. This will result in a huge loss of revenue to the Tamil Nadu government. In view of this, the order of the learned Judge should be set aside. Until then, an interim stay should be placed on the order of the single judge.”
This petition came up for hearing in the session of Justices S.S. Sundar, S. Smt. Later, the judges adjourned the hearing by imposing an interim stay on the order issued by the single judge barring the Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission from taking a final decision on the request of the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board to increase the electricity tariff.