Electricity is ones basic need, says court, restrains discom

Observing that “electricity is a basic need of every human being,” a Delhi court has restrained energy distribution firm BSES YPL from snapping power supply to the premises of a man, accused by the discom of tampering with the meter.

The court’s observation came on a plea by an East Delhi resident Rajender Kumar Sharma for direction to the discom not to disconnect the power supply to his premises. “In my considered opinion, electricity is the basic need of every human being in the present day circumstances and hence a prima-facie case is made out in favour of plaintiff (Sharma) for having the facility of electricity at the suit premises till the final disposal of this case on merits,” Additional Sessions Judge Shahbuddin said.

Sharma had told the court that he had secured the power connection at his premises for industrial purposes and a meter was installed there in 2004 but after an inspection in 2008, the power distribution firm “arbitrarily” raised a bill of Rs 36.94 lakh alleging that he had tampered with the meter.

He had said no proper inspection was carried out at his premises and discom had threatened him with snapping the power connection if the bill was not paid. During the arguments, the power distribution firm said Sharma had tampered with the meter and equipments and the inspection was carried out as per the rules.

It had said that bill was rightly raised against Sharma and he had not paid substantial amount of the bill so far and thus he was not entitled for any relief.

The court, in its order, directed Sharma to deposit 35 per cent of the total bill raised by the discom within a month and show the receipt to it.
The court allowed Sharma’s plea and restrained the discom from disconnecting the power supply but said he will deposit 35 per cent of the total bill.

“I allow the application of plaintiff (Sharma) and restrain defendant company (BSES YPL) along with its officials from disconnecting supply of electricity at the suit premises till the final disposal of this case on merits but with a condition that the plaintiff shall deposit 35 per cent of the impugned bill to the defendant company within one month from today and show the receipt of the payment of the same to this court on the next date of hearing,”
the judge said.

The court noted that if Sharma fails to pay 35 per cent of the total bill within a month, “then the interim protection given in his favour by this order shall stand automatically cancelled by virtue of this order.”
Source: Deccan herald

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