At, Madya Pradesh State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission Bhopal
By, THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE SHANTANU S. KEMKAR
By, THE HONOURABLE DR.(MRS.) MONIKA MALIK
By, MEMBER & THE HONOURABLE MR. S.S. BANSAL
For the Appellant: Asad Ullah Khan, Learned Counsel. For the Respondents: Shivam Gurnani, Advocate, Sapna Aggarwal, Learned Counsel.
Shantanu S. Kemkar :
1. Feeling aggrieved by the order dated 10.10.2008 passed by the District Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission, Satna (For short €˜District Commission€™) in C.C.No.267/2007 whereby his complaint has been partly allowed, the complainant has filed this appeal.
2. Brief facts of the case as stated in the complaint filed before the District Commission are that the complainant had applied for 5 HP non-domestic electricity connection for running a flour mill from the opposite party/respondent M. P. Poorva Kshetra Vidyut Vitran Company Limited (For short €˜Electricity Company€™). The complainant alleged that for obtaining the said connection Rs.5852/- was deposited by him on 27.11.2006. On 11.12.2006 he was orally informed by the officials of the Electricity Company that he has been allotted electricity connection having service no.7256 IP. Although the meter was not installed but he got the electricity connection with the help of lineman and started running his flour mill. On 11.01.2007, the officials of the Electricity Company inspected his premises and on the basis of inspection a demand notice for Rs.25,452/- was given. Alleging deficiency in service on part of the opposite parties, the complainant filed a complaint before the District Commission for cancellation of said demand as also direction to Electricity Company to provide electricity connection to him along with compensation and cost.
3. The opposite parties resisted the complaint stating on 11.01.2007 when the flying squad of the electricity company inspected the complainant€™s premises it was found that the complainant was drawing electricity directly from line for running his flour mill the in an unauthorized manner and therefore proceedings under Section 135 of the Electricity Act, 2003 have been initiated against him and therefore this complaint is not maintainable.
4. The District Commission partly allowed the complaint holding that the demand raised by the Electricity Company cannot be quashed. However, the District Commission has directed the Electricity Company to provide electricity connection to the complainant after completing all the formalities. Hence this appeal.
5. Having heard learned counsel for the parties and on perusal of record we find that the record reveals that present case is based on allegation of theft of electricity. Respondents have inspected the premises of the appellant on 11.01.2007 and found that the complainant/appellant was drawing electricity directly from the line in an unauthorized manner for running his flour mill of which panchnama was prepared in the presence of the complainant€™s son and raised a provisional assessment under Section 126/135 of the Electricity Act, 2003 dated 11.01.2007 for a sum of Rs.25,452/-.
6. The Supreme Court in the case of U.P.Power Corporation Limited & Ors. Vs Anis Ahmad, III (2013) CPJ 1 (SC) has held that a Consumer Forum cannot derive power to adjudicate a dispute in relation to assessment made under Section 126 or offences under Section 135 to 140 of the Electricity Act, 2003 as acts of indulging in unauthorized use of electricity as defined under Section 126 or committing offence under Section 135 to 140 of the Electricity Act do not fall within the ambit of Consumer Protection Act. Therefore, the District
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Commission has no jurisdiction to entertain a complaint in respect of the disputed penal bill. So far as the grievance of the complainant/appellant regarding non supply of electricity connection that has been redressed by the District Commission. 7. As a result, we find no cogent reasons to interfere with the impugned order. 8. The appeal is dismissed.