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Thread: Electricity Revenue Office APSPDCL

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    Default Electricity Revenue Office APSPDCL

    BEFORE THE A.P. STATE CONSUMER DISPUTES REDRESSAL COMMISSION

    AT HYDERABAD.



    F.A. 278/2006 against C.C. 142/2005, Dist. Forum, Vijayawada.



    Between:

    Talasila Jhansi

    W/o. Sambasiva Rao

    D.No. 29-6-42,

    Suryaraopet, Vijaywada. *** Appellant/

    Complainant.

    AND



    1.. The Assistant Accounts Officer

    Electricity Revenue Office

    APSPDCL, Operation Circle

    Governorpet, Vijayawada-2.



    2. The Superintending Engineer

    APSPDCL, Bandar Road

    Vijayawada. *** Respondent/

    O.Ps.



    F.A. 279/2006 against C.C. 143/2005, Dist. Forum, Vijayawada.



    Between:

    Talasila Jhansi

    W/o. Sambasiva Rao

    D.No. 29-6-42,

    Suryaraopet, Vijaywada. *** Appellant/

    Complainant.

    AND



    1. The Assistant Accounts Officer

    Electricity Revenue Office

    APSPDCL, Operation Circle

    Governorpet, Vijayawada-2.



    2. The Superintending Engineer

    APSPDCL, Bandar Road

    Vijayawada. *** Respondent/

    O.Ps.



    F.A. 280/2006 against C.C. 144/2005, Dist. Forum, Vijayawada.



    Between:

    Talasila Jhansi

    W/o. Sambasiva Rao

    D.No. 29-6-42,

    Suryaraopet, Vijaywada. *** Appellant/

    Complainant.

    AND

    1. The Assistant Accounts Officer

    Electricity Revenue Office

    APSPDCL, Operation Circle

    Governorpet, Vijayawada-2.



    2. The Superintending Engineer

    APSPDCL, Bandar Road

    Vijayawada. *** Respondent/

    O.Ps.







    Counsel for the Appellant: M/s. A. Satyanarayana

    Counsel for the Resps: M/s. M. Sreeramulu Reddy



    CORAM:

    HON’BLE SRI JUSTICE D. APPA RAO, PRESIDENT

    SMT. M. SHREESHA, MEMBER

    &

    SRI SYED ABDULLAH, MEMBER





    TUESDAY, THIS THE TWENTY FOURTH DAY OF MARCH TWO THOUSAND NINE



    Oral Order: (Per Hon’ble Justice D. Appa Rao, President)



    *****



    1) All these matters pertain to disconnection of electricity to the complainant’s premises, though three separate orders were passed on three complaints since they pertain to very same subject matter we have clubbed these three appeals for passing a common order. In all these appeals the parties as well as the subject matter are common.



    2) The case of the complainant in brief is that she owns a house bearing door No. 27-6-59 in Prakashnagar of Vijayawada. There are three service connections bearing Nos. 1955/596, 1955/597, 1955/598. While so, the respondent electricity board raised unjustified demand of Rs. 10,895/- towards arrears said to be outstanding against S.C. No. 1955/598 for the period ending 2/2005. The board threatened to disconnect the other two service connections standing in the name of Sri JVP Sastry, from whom she purchased the property under an agreement of sale. In fact there were no arrears for S.C. No. 1955/598. On that she gave registered notice followed by legal notice questioning the illegal demand and for restoration of electricity pertaining to other two service connections. They have unilaterally disconnected the supply of S.C. Nos. 1955/596 (C.D.No. 142/2005) and 1955/597 (C.D. No. 143/2005) without any notice. Therefore she filed three complaints C.D. 142/2005, C.D. 143/2005 and C.D. 144/2005 for restoration of electricity service connections besides damages to a tune of Rs. 25,000/- each and costs.



    3) The respondent electricity board resisted the case. It alleged that the complainant was not the original registered consumer. It was in the name of one J.V.P. Sastry and was continuing in his name as per the records. Since the current consumption charges (C.C. charges) for S.C. No. 1955/598 were pending from 2/2005 it disconnected the said service connection for non-payment of an amount of Rs. 10,895/-. A demand notice Dt. 28.3.2005 was also issued to pay the arrears within 7 days failing which disconnections would be made. Since the amount was not paid by virtue of the terms and conditions under Clause 42.3 read with Section 49 of the Electricity Act, not only the said service connection but also the other two service connection Nos. 1955/596 and 1955/597 were disconnected in the month of April, 2005. There was no illegality in disconnecting the service connections. Therefore, it prayed for dismissal of the complaint with costs.



    4) The complainant in proof of her case filed her affidavit evidence and got Exs. A1 to A15 marked. Refuting her evidence, the electricity board filed the affidavit evidence of its Asst. Accounts Officer and got Exs. B1 to B4 marked.



    5) The Dist. Forum after considering the evidence placed on record opined that admittedly all the three service connections stood in the name of Sri JVP Sastry in the registers of the board from whom the complainant alleged to have been purchased the property under agreement of sale Dt. 30.6.2000. Since the record discloses that there were arrears for S.C. No. 1955/598 the board was justified in disconnecting the other service connections also standing in the name of Sri JVP Sastry. She asserts that she purchased the house under an agreement of sale. Ex-facie an agreement of sale does not convey any title on the complainant. At any rate, her name was not transferred in the records of the board. Therefore the complaint was dismissed, however, without costs.







    6) Aggrieved by the said decision, the complainant preferred these appeals contending that the Dist. Forum did not appreciate the facts in correct perspective. It ought to have seen that she had purchased the house property from Sri JVP Sastry, original owner under agreement of sale. In fact, Sri JVP Sastry who sold the property died, in turn his son got it under registered will executed by his father. He was beneficiary. Therefore she prayed that the appeals be allowed.



    7) At the outset, it may be stated that the house property belong to one Sri JVP Sastry. It has three service connections bearing Nos. 1955/596, 1955/597 and 1955/598. The electricity board directed Sri JVP Sastry by notice Ex. B3 Dt 28.3.2005 that an amount of Rs. 10,895/- was due at the end of 2/2005, and on failure to pay the said amount not only the said service connection but also other two service connections S.C Nos. 5596 and 5594.

    Admittedly the said amount was not paid. By invoking Clause 42.3 of the terms and conditions of supply, besides Section 49 of the Electricity Act it was disconnected. Challenging the act of the electricity board, the complainant filed three complaints for the three service connections mentioned above alleging that she had purchased the house property from Sri JVP Sastry under agreement of sale Ex. A4 (xerox copy) Dt. 30.6.2000.



    8) A perusal of the agreement shows that agreement of sale was executed by J. Ravindra Kumar son of JVP Sastry alleging that he got the house property from Sri JVP Sastry under a Will. Having received a part of sale consideration, he sold it away to the complainant under agreement of sale Ex. A4 Dt. 30.6.2000. Despite the fact that the service connections stood in the name of Sri JVP Sastry neither his son, the vendor J. Ravindra Kumar nor the complainant who said to have purchased the house property under an agreement chose to get the service connections transferred in their favour. She was paying the bills still issued under the name of Sri JVP Sastry.





    It is also not in dispute that there was no registered sale deed in favour of complainant. Whatever be the nature of her title, the service connections were not changed in the name of the complainant. When the electricity board issued Ex. B3 informing that Sri JVP Sastry was in arrears to a tune of Rs. 10,895/- towards C.C. charges the complainant did not dispute the validity of the demand. It is an admitted fact that all these three service connections stood in the name of Sri JVP Sastry. The arrears were not paid. Demand notice was issued demanding the amount that service connections would be disconnected.



    9) By virtue of Section 49 of the Electricity (Supply) Act, 1948 (Central Act No. 54 of 1948), the A.P. Electricity Board notified the terms and conditions of supply of electricity energy by issuing BP Ms. No. 690 Dt. 17.9.1975.



    42.3. Disconnection due to default in payments which we are concerned reads as follows:



    Where any consumer defaults in payment of :

    a) Charges for the supply of electricity and/or



    b) Minimum charges where supply is under disconnection and/or



    c) Unconnected minimum charges due in respect of a service for which supply is sanctioned and made ready but not yet availed, and/or





    d) Any other sums payable to the board under the contract of supply or the tariff and terms and conditions of supply notified by the board, under Sec. 49 of the Electricity Supply Act, the Board may, without prejudice to its rights cause to be disconnected all or any of the other services of the consumer though such services be distinct and are governed by separate agreements and though no default occurred in respect thereof.



    (emphasis supplied)







    10) No doubt the consumer was defined in Clause 2.5 as ‘consumer’ “means any person who is supplied with electrical energy by the board and includes any person whose premises are for the time being connected for the purpose of receiving electrical energy with the works of the board and shall also include an intending consumer or a consumer who has been disconnected.” By virtue of this definition, the complainant could be termed as consumer. However, the fact remains that the board has power and authority to disconnect the supply due to default in payment by the consumers.





    11) When the board has unfettered power to disconnect all or any of the other services of the consumer when he commits default in payment of one of the service connections, the Board cannot be found fault with, when it disconnected the other service connections. It is not the case of the complainant even that there were no arrears for any of the service connections. When the service connections stood in the name of Sri JVP Sastry and the board could prove that Sri JVP Sastry committed default in payment of C.C. charges of S.C. No. 1955/598 necessarily it has every power to disconnect all these service connections stood in his name. The complainant contends that one of the service connections stands in the name of M/s. Sri Krishna Rich Foods vide Ex. A15 after getting the service connection changed in its favour. Therefore the board has no right to disconnect. The said Foods did not challenge. In fact the said contention taken is contrary to her stand that she is the owner. Ex. B1 extract from the register filed by the board shows that all these service connections stood in the name of Sri JVP Sastry. When the board could prove that the person had committed default in payment of one of the service connections, it had every right to disconnect the other two service connections. The board was justified in disconnecting the service connections for the arrears. There is no deficiency in service on its part.







    12) We do not see any merits in the appeals. In the result the appeals are dismissed. However, in the circumstances of the case no costs.







    PRESIDENT LADY MEMBER MALE MEMBER



    Dt. 24. 03. 2009.

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