HYDERABAD : The Hyderabad High Court has declared that the tariff orders passed by the Electricity Regulatory Commission are subject to scrutiny by this court in appropriate cases and there is no immunity.
While dealing with petitions by Sri Dhanalakshmi Cotton and Rice Mills Private Limited and other industries, justice A Ramalingeswara Rao has quashed the decisions of the power distribution companies of the erstwhile state of AP to collect energy charges on excess energy from the companies.
The judge held that though the Commission is a creature of a statute, it cannot claim any immunity for its actions. ‘’When the decision making process is vitiated, this Court can certainly interfere with the decision and quash the same,’’ the judge noted.
The petitioner moved the court against the decision of the power distribution companies, contending that while fixing the retail tariff Rates, the Commission has not followed the procedure prescribed under the provisions of the Electricity Act, 2003 and Business Regulations framed there under.
The petitioners argued that there was no rationale in clubbing the contracted maximum demand and energy which are independent and though this point was earlier decided.
On the other hand, the distribution companies submitted that the commission has considered various aspects of the matter and no opportunity need be given to the consumers while deciding rates.