THE SECRETARY, KSEB, VYDHYUTHI BHAVAN, TVPM Vs. K.V.NARAYANAN
KERALA STATE CONSUMER DISPUTES REDRESSAL COMMISSION
The Secretary, Kseb, Vydhyuthi Bhavan, Tvpm
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K.R.UDAYABHANU, PRESIDENT -
(1.) THE appellants are the opposite
parties/KSEB in OP:177/03 in the file of CDRF, Kottayam. The bills issued
by the appellants towards back assessment stands cancelled. It is also
ordered that the appellants will refund Rs.2798/ - paid by the complainant
with interest at 24% per annum and also to pay cost of Rs.750/ -
(2.) THE matter relates to the back assessment for a period of 4 years and also the amount claimed subsequent to the application for
dismantling at the building which was demolished. It is thereafter the
Revenue Recovery proceedings have been initiated for a sum of Rs.12,597/ -.
(3.) THE complainant was issued with bills back assessing from September 1996 onwards on objection raised by the audit party in March
2009 on the ground that no segregation was effected with respect to power load and light load in the welding workshop of the complainant. Hence the
penal bill including 50% of the energy consumed was issued on the ground
of non segregation. Evidently, from 1996 onwards the complainant was
having industrial construction. The Forum relying on the decision of the
High Court in E.P.Ahammed Koya v KSEB1 has set aside the bills of back
assessment. The High Court has pointed out that giving connection to an
industrial consumer without insisting for segregation of power load and
light load is a lapse on the part of the electricity authorities and
hence the consumer should be given notice and reasonable time to rectify
the defect. There is no case for the appellants that the complainant was
given such notice and time for rectification of defects. It is only when
the audit party pointed out the matter the appellants instantly issued
the penal bill. Further even after the request for dismantling admittedly
made on 30/1/2002 dismantling has been effected only on July 2002 and
bill issued up to July 2002. Evidently the delay in dismantling is on
account of the lapse of the opposite parties/appellants. Hence the above
billing is clearly illegal.
1. In the circumstances we find there is no illegality in the order of the Forum.
2. It was contended by the appellants relying on the order of my predecessor of this commission in A/340/98 that once Revenue Recovery proceedings have been initiated only Civil Courts have got the jurisdiction. We cannot agree with the above stand as the basis of initiating the RR proceedings is illegal. There can be no restriction on the power of this Commission to set aside the bills on the basis of which the RR proceedings have been initiated.
3. All the same the Forum has directed the appellant to pay interest at 24% per annum on the amount ordered to be paid is Rs.2719/ -. We find the rate of interest ordered to be paid is excessive. Hence the rate of interest is reduced to 12%. The rest of the order of the Forum is confirmed.
In the result the appeal is allowed in part with respect to the
rate of interest. The appeal is disposed of accordingly.
Appeal partly allowed.;
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