Reliance discoms’ plea rejected by tribunal

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Bhubaneswar: In another setback to Reliance Infrastructure, the Appellate Tribunal for Electricity (ATE) rejected its stay plea on the revocation of licenses of its three discoms by OERC.

The next hearing of the case has been scheduled on March 24, and in the meantime, the tribunal has asked both Reliance and OERC to furnish their replies by March 17.

Notably, coming down hard on the failure of Reliance-managed discoms (distribution company) in reining in Aggregate Technical and Commercial (AT&C) losses, the Odisha Electricity Regulatory Commission (OERC) has scrapped the licenses of WESCO, NESCO and SOUTHCO.

After withdrawal of licenses the OERC has appointed the CMD of Gridco as the administrator of these companies for the time being.

The commission took the decision after the unsatisfactory improvement in performance of these companies even after operating for a decade and a half.

These discoms were being managed by Reliance Infrastructure.

Non-performance, failure in complying with OERC directives and keeping larger public interests in mind, the commission has withdrawn the licenses of the discoms, said OERC secretary, B.D. Dhal.

The AT&C losses of these companies are hovering around 40 % which is significantly higher than other states and no steps have been taken in this regard after repeated interventions by OERC, informed principal secretary of Energy department, Suresh Chandra Mohapatra.

With an operating history of around 15 years, neither they have made any investments for the development of infrastructure nor have shown any improvement in their performance, he added.

According to sources, though the existing employees of the department will not be affected by the withdrawal of licenses, however the managerial level employees working on behalf of Reliance will be sent back.

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