CHENNAI: Madras High Court has admitted a public interest writ petition challenging the appointments of S Akshayakumar as chairman and G Rajagopal as member of the TN Electricity Regulatory Commission (TNERC).
A Division Bench of Justices Aruna Jagadeesan and Pushpa Sathyanarayana, before which the PIL from advocate MG Rasool, came up for hearing on Tuesday, ordered notice to the authorities concerned, returnable by December 9.
Following the submission of senior advocate P Wilson, the Bench also orally directed the Commission not to finalise and pass orders on the revision of electricity tariff.
Akshayakumar, who worked as MD of TANTRANSCO, retired on May 31 this year. Within six days, he was appointed chairman of the TNERC. Rajagopal was director, Finance, TANGEDCO before his elevation as member, TNERC.
Wilson contended that the duo lacked knowledge in law, as the posts are quasi-judicial in nature. Sec. 84(2) of the Electricity Act, 2003, states that the government may appoint any person, who is or has been a judge of a HC to the posts in question.
Moreover, the selection committee is to be constituted six months before the vacancy arises or within a month from the date of vacancy. It has to suggest two names for each post, that too within three months from the date of the constitution. It should satisfy itself that the appointees do not have any financial or other interest which is likely to affect prejudicially their
functions. None of such stipulations made in Sections 84 (2)(3)(4) and (5) are complied with in the matter of selection of Akshayakumar and Rajagopal, Wilson added.