The Supreme Court on Thursday directed BSES Rajdhani Power Limited (BRPL) and BSES Yamuna Power Limited (BYPL), responsible for power distribution in the Capital, to pay Rs 45 crore to Damodar Valley Corporation (DVC) of Rs 141 crore outstanding dues for drawing electricity from the corporation.
A special bench headed by justice DK Jain turned down persistent pleas of the two companies not to pass the directions and ordered the arrears must be paid by November 30.
The court, however, allowed them to have a negotiable settlement with DVC. It refused to take a lenient view on the ground that the two discoms, both 51:49 joint ventures between Reliance ADAG and Delhi government, were reeling under heavy revenue loss.
The SC added the order was an ad-hoc arrangement and fixed December 8 for further hearing the matter. The court's order came on a suo-motu cognisance case regarding power crisis in Delhi.
Rapping up the discoms that they were not "indispensable," the bench also ordered the two to pay current charges beginning from October. The charges were fixed in an agreement between the discoms and DVC in 2006. Of R45 crore, BRPL has to pay R25 crore and BYPL has to deposit R20 crore. BRPL is the power supplier to south and southwest parts of Delhi, while Yamuna Power Limited distributes electricity to east Delhi.
Both, BRPL and BYPL claimed NTPC and not DVC was the bulk supplier for Delhi. Power from DVC constitutes just 5%. Therefore, they added, the discoms were under obligation to pay NTPC first.
"You are not giving charity. If you have a major loss, then leave it. Let somebody else come in," the bench told the discoms when they contended the companies were in a precarious financial position with regard to its cash flows. It also said the companies were not indispensable.
"The company should not be under the notion that if it goes, Delhi will not get power supply. Shall we take it that you are not prepared to pay," it observed when the counsel expressed reservation in paying the amount.