Decided on September 06,1994



- (1.)This application umder Article 226 of the Constitution of India has been filed praying the relief that a direction be issued to the respondents to comply with the requirements of Section 4 of the Interest on Delayed payments to Small Scale and; Ancillary Industrial Undertakings Act, 1993 (hereinafter referred to as the 'Act')- This Act was enacted to provide for and regulate the payment of interest on delayed payments to small scale and ancillary industrial undertakings and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto. The Act came into force on the 23rd day of September, 1992.
(2.)Section 2 provides for definitons. Section 2(a) is the definition of "ancillary industrial undertakings" Section 2(b) as the definition of "appointed day" and the explanation to that sub-section also defines what is the "day of acceptance;" the day of deemed acceptance". Section 2(c) defines "buyer". Section 2(d) defines "goods". Section 2(o) defines "small scale industrial undertaking". Section 2(f) defines "suppliers". Section 3 provides the liability of buyer to make payment. Section 4 provides the date from which and rate- at which interest is payable. Section 4 is quoted below : "4. Where any buyer falls to make payment of the amount to the supplier, as required under section 3, the buyer shall, notwithstanding anything contained in any agreement between the buyer and the supplier or in any law for the time being in force, be liable to pay interest to the superior on that amount from the appointed day or, as the case may be, from the date immediately following the date agreed upon at such rate which is five per cent points above the floor rate for Comparable landing. Explanation For the purposes of this section, "floor rate for comparable lending" means the highest of the minimum lending rates charged by scheduled banks (not being co-operative banks) on credit limits in accordance with the directions given or issued to banking companies generally by the Reserve Bank of India under the Banking Regulation Act, 1949." Section 5 provides for liability of the buyer to pay compound interest. Section 6 provides for recovery of the amount due. Section 6 is quoted below :
"6. The amount due from a buyer, together with the amount of interest calculated in accordance with the provisions of sections 4 and 5, shall be recoverable by the supplier from the buyer by way of a suit or other proceeding under any law for the time bring in force."
Section 7 providesfor appeal. We are not concerned with the other sections for determination of the controversy in this matter.
(3.)The only question which arises for determination is as to whether a direction should be issued commanding the Respondents to comply with the requirements of Section 4 of the Act. As indicated above, Section 6 provides for recovery of the amount due and this application is not an applicable for recovery and the amount due. So, as and when such a proceeding is brought by way of a suit or other proceeding, that question is to be determined by an appropriate court and remedies sought for is this writ proceeding is not necessary to be given in the instant case. Yet, let us have a look on the facts of the present case. The petitioner in paragraph 2 of the writ application claims that it is a small scale industry and it is registered as such, by the District Industries Centre. There was a direction on 17.2.92 and 17.3.92 for supply of P.S.C. coals to ASEB. The petitioner claims to have supplied the coals numbering 3,9000/- by both the orders dated 17.2.92 and 17.3.92. Bills ware taised for the supply of coals and ultiamtely the bills were finally paid on 8,10.93. So, as on today, no amount of the bills is due to the petitioner.The only claim in this writ application is that they are entitled to interest fca delayed payment under the Act. But what is the due amount has not been stated anywhere and there is necessity to decide this claim and question in an appropriate suit and/or proceeding. The writ court cannot decide that matter. This writ application cannot be short cut for recovery of the amount said to be due to the petitioner. Section 6 provides for filing of a suit or other proceeding under any law for the time being inforce. That procedure provided for has not been resorted by the petitioner and this writ court is not the appropriate court to grant relief as claimed by the petitioner.

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