KCR to Justice Narasimha Reddy Commission: Power probe panel biased, step down

The former chief minister had sought time till July-end to submit his reply but the commission had asked him to do so by Saturday.
Telangana former Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao
Telangana former Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao(File photo)

HYDERABAD: Former Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao has alleged that the Justice L Narasimha Reddy commission, which is looking into alleged irregularities in the power sector, is biased and urged him to step down.

In his 12-page reply to the commission on Saturday, the former chief minister claimed that all steps were initiated as per the judgments of the Electricity Regulatory Commission (ERC) formed as per the Electricity Act of 2003. If any organisation or person had any objection, they could have aired them at the public hearings conducted by the ERC, he added.

The former chief minister had sought time till July-end to submit his reply but the commission had asked him to do so by Saturday.

In his reply, KCR said: “A Revanth Reddy, then an MLA of the TDP, had submitted his objections to buying of power from Chhattisgarh to the ERC and the latter had given clearance after carefully considering the objections filed. The law stipulates that if Revanth had any objections, he was empowered to move the Electricity Appellate Tribunal and later the Supreme Court too. However, Revanth had not preferred to move the higher authorities objecting to the ERC decision.”

However, after Revanth became the chief minister, his government bypassed the “well-known legal standing” that “inquiry commissions could not be constituted against the orders of the ERC decisions and the government set up a Commission of Inquiry under your chairmanship,” the BRS chief said in his letter to Justice Reddy.

“I believe you have gone beyond the terms of reference in apportioning unjustified blame, which shows your determination to discredit the erstwhile government. Hence the request for you to withdraw from the commission of inquiry,” the former CM added.

Former chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, in his reply to the Justice L Narasimha Reddy commission, said BHEL was given the contract on nomination basis for Bhadradri power plant given the latter’s assurance to complete the construction in two years and also given the dire necessity of power. “During your press conference, you mentioned that the pace of construction of the Bhadradri plant was not as promised. Unfortunately, you have not considered the stay order issued by the NGT and also the corona pandemic that impeded the works,” he added.

Telangana former Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao
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To bring Telangana out of the power crisis, there was no option for the government but to have a PPA with Chhattisgarh and submit it to the PGCIL to book the corridor, he added. “The other reason for signing the PPA was that Chhattisgarh wanted to sell power from Marwah power station, which was in the final stages of completion, and at the same time, the PGCIL line was also getting completed. However, in your press conference on 11-6-2024, without referring to any of these above mentioned facts, you spoke as if the Marwah power plant was not in existence and found fault with the decision to buy power from the plant. Unfortunately, you ignored the fact that PPAs are entered into before the completion of power plants. You also ignored the expression in the MoU ‘Upcoming Marwah project’.”

He accused the Congress government of setting up the commission of inquiry with a clear political motive and to discredit the previous government. “If the political considerations of the current ruling party are unfortunate, more painful are your unbridled comments as the chairman of the commission of inquiry in the press conference,” KCR added.

He alleged that it is clear that Justice Reddy has formed a predetermined opinion that mistakes were committed and claimed this biased view would be seen in the final report too. He said: “An inescapable conclusion after considering all these facts is the futility of deposing before this commission of inquiry. Hence considering all these facts, I humbly request you to step down from the responsibilities of heading the commission of inquiry.”

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