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Home News Power Sector News Electricity consumers cannot directly approach courts- Supreme Court

Electricity consumers cannot directly approach courts- Supreme Court

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Electricity consumers cannot directly approach courts- Supreme CourtThe Supreme Court has held on 14-11-2008 that courts cannot entertain a petition filed by an electricity consumer accused of pilferage or involved in any other dispute pertaining to power supply unless he or she has exhausted all available alternatives for remedy. Interpreting sub-section (1) of Section 24 of the Indian Electricity Act, 1910, a bench of Justices Arijit Pasayat and Mukundakam Sharma said that a suit against the action of a power distribution company was not maintainable in a court of law, if the alternative remedies were not exhausted.

The alternative remedy refers to higher authorities in the power distribution company and the appellate tribunal constituted for the purpose.

According to the Electricity Act, no Court shall take cognizance of any matter pertaining to the payment of charges due from any person to a licensee in respect of the supply of energy to him or stay the recovery thereof unless - he has exhausted all the remedies available to him under the terms and conditions governing the supply of energy to him.

It further says that the consumer has to deposit forty per cent of the amount outstanding against him, with the licensee.

The apex court passed the ruling while upholding an appeal filed by the Haryana Vidyut Parsaran Nigam Ltd against M/s Super Star Grit Udyog which was served with a penalty of Rs 11.37 lakh by the power discom for alleged pilferage of energy.



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