Delhi High Court: In a PIL filed on behalf of the Hindu Migrants who have come from Pakistan to India, and are staying in Adarsh Nagar near Majlis Park Metro Station who do not have a permanent place of shelter and are living in a cluster of jhuggis, the authorities are demanding proof of ownership of land, on demand of electricity connection, a Division Bench of Satish Chandra Sharma CJ., and Subramonium Prasad, J. directs Union of India to file an affidavit as to why a No Objection Certificate (‘NOC’) has not been issued to the migrants from Pakistan who are residing without electricity for the last five to six years.
Counsel for the petitioner submitted that Rule 9(1) of the Electricity (Rights of Consumer) Rules, 2020, states that a person who is not the owner, and if he is an occupant, can also apply for an electricity connection, emphasizing that proof of ownership is not required under the Rules.
However, Tata Power Delhi Distribution Limited (TPDDL) stated that NOC is certainly required as certain poles will have to be erected for providing proper electricity. Also, the land in question over which the Jhuggis have been established belongs to the Government of India/ Defence Department/ DMRC, and in absence of a NOC from the land-owning agency, the distribution company is not in a position to provide Electricity Connection.
The Court noted that that there are small children, women in area, and in absence of electricity, it has become very difficult for these families to survive, and they are living in extremely harsh conditions.
The Court remarked “this Court hopes and trusts that the Government of India will look into the plight of the migrants sympathetically, and shall file a proper affidavit positively within two weeks.”
Thus, the Court granted two weeks and directed the Union of India time to file an affidavit as to why NOC has not been issued to the migrants.
[Hariom v. State of NCT of Delhi, 2022 SCC OnLine Del 2919, decided on 06-09-2022]
Advocates who appeared in this case :
For petitioner- Mr. Sanjeev Poddar, Sr. Advocate with Ms. Samiksha, Advocate.
For respondent- Mr. Sameer Vashisht, Additional Standing Counsel with Ms. Sanjana Nangia, Advocate for respondent Nos. 1 & 2.
Mr. Manish Kr. Srivastava and Mr. Akhil Hasija, Advocate for respondent NO.3.
Mr. Anurag Ahluwalia and Mr. Danish Faraz Khan, Advocates for respondent/ UOI.
Mr. Anand Prakash, Standing Counsel with Mr. Akhil Raj and Ms. Varsha Arya, Advocates for respondent/ NDMC.
Mr. Sarthak Chiller and Mr. Sanjeev Mahajan, Advocates for respondent No.4.
Mr. Anand Prakash, Standing Counsel with Ms. Varsha Arya and Mr. Akhil Raj, Advocates for respondent No.5
*Arunima Bose, Editorial Assistant has put this report together.