ELECTRIC INSPECTOR TO GOVT OF U P Vs. R J SINGH
LAWS(ALL)-1965-8-16
HIGH COURT OF ALLAHABAD
Decided on August 24,1965

ELECTRIC INSPECTOR TO GOVT. OF U.P. Appellant
VERSUS
R.J.SINGH Respondents





Cited Judgements :-

VENKATASWAMY K R VS. STATE OF KARNATAKA [LAWS(KAR)-1978-4-42] [REFERRED TO]
SURYA NARAYAN SAHU VS. STATE OF ORISSA [LAWS(ORI)-1983-1-2] [REFERRED TO]
ULTRA TECH CEMENT LIMITED VS. THE UNION OF INDIA [LAWS(KER)-2014-9-82] [REFERRED TO]


JUDGEMENT

Desai, C.J. - (1.)THIS is an appeal by the Electric Inspector to Government from a judgment of our brother Jagdish Sahai quashing by certiorari his order dated 19-11-1958 cancelling the licence granted to the respondent under Clause 12 of Notification No. 877/EI-86-1938, dated 2-6-1942, issued by the State Government of U. P., debarring him from obtaining a licence for the next two years.
(2.)THE respondent is a contractor who undertakes electrical installation work. THE Indian Electricity Act enacted to amend the law relating to the supply and use of electrical energy has created, the Central Electricity Board to exercise power conferred by Section 37. THE power is to make rules to regulate transmission, supply and use of energy and generally to carry out the purposes and objects of the Act including rules providing for the protection of persons and property from injury by reason of contact with or the proximity of, or by reason of the defective or dangerous condition of any appliance or apparatus used in the transmission, supply or use of energy. In exercise of this power the Cenral Electricity Board has made Indian Electricity Rules, 1937. Rule 48(1) reads as follows: "No electrical installation work..... shall be carried out upon the premises of or on behalf of any consumer or owner for the purposes of the supply of energy to such consumer or owner, except by an electrical contractor licensed by the State Government in this behalf."
This is the only rule regarding a licence for carrying out electrical installation work; there is no rule laying down the conditions of a licence, to whom a licence can be granted or refused, what are the conditions to be fulfilled by a person applying for a licence, what is the duration of a licence, by whom and in what circumstances can a licence be cancelled, what is the remedy against cancellation of a licence etc. There is no rule expressly empowering the State Government to make rules regarding a licence. Rule 48(2) laid down that Rule 48(1) would come into force in respect of any State on such day as the State Government may by notification in the official Gazette appoint. The State Government on 2-6-1942 issued notification No. 877/EI-86-1938 prescribing conditions for the grant of licences to electrical contractors under Rule 48 Clauses 12, 15, 16, 17, 19, 20, 21 and 24 deal with qualifications, application for licence, fees, responsibilities of an electrical contractor, cancellation of a licence and renewal of a licence. The only qualification required is possession of instruments for carrying out the tests of electrical installation required under the Indian Electricity Rules.

An application for a licence is to be made on a prescribed form, and a licence is granted on a prescribed form on payment of a fee of Rs. 100. Subsequently, a fee of Rs. 25 is to be paid for annual renewal. A contractor is responsible for submitting certain returns and any other return or information which the Electric Inspector may require, for maintaining only bona fide, certificated and full time employees, for maintaining a register of supervisors, wiremen and apprentices and for the quality of all materials used and the work carried out by his employees, for removing or rectifying defects in any work found to be defective by the Electric Inspector and for undertaking electrical installation work only on a written contract. Clause 21 is to the effect that the Electric Inspector may at any time cancel a "licence if the person to whom the licence is granted is in his opinion not fit to hold the licence" and every order made by him is subject to revision by the State Government. A licence is granted in a prescribed form and must be renewed "annually".

(3.)CLAUSE 24 provides that "failure to renew a licence shall render such licence liable to cancellation, and the full initial fees will be charged for the issue of a new licence" and that an "application for renewal together with the licence shall be submitted to the Electric Inspector to Government at least one month before the date of expiry of the licence" A licence expires on the 31st day of March every year.
The respondent obtained a licence under Clause 16 of the above notification in 1950 and it was renewed year after year till 1958. He carried out electrical installation in an exhibition in the months of October and November, 1956. The work done was found to be defective resulting in a death by electro- cution and after an inquiry lasting nearly two years, the Electric Inspector (the appellant before us) on 19-11-1958 passed the impugned order cancelling the licence under Clause 21 of the Notification and debarred him from getting a fresh licence for a period of two years because he was not "considered fit to hold the licence inasmuch as he did not comply with Rule 30 of the Indian Electricity Rules in respect of the electrical installation carried out by him in the exhibition in November, 1956'. The respondent did not apply to the State Government to revise the order of the Electric Inspector, instead he filed a petition for certiorari for the quashing of it.

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