HC refuses to stay govt's decision of CAG audit of discoms

Tags: News
In a jolt to three private discoms, the Delhi High Court today refused to stay the city government's decision asking the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India to audit their accounts.

The court also asked BSES Rajdhani Power Ltd, BSES Yamuna Power Ltd of Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group and Tata Power Delhi Distribution Ltd to cooperate with CAG in auditing and asked the top auditor not to submit its report till it hears the discoms' petitions on March 19.

"This court is of the view that these matters require detailed hearing. Issue notice....However, the prayer for the stay on the audit/impugned order (of Delhi government) is declined. The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India shall not submit the report (to the government) till March 19, next date of hearing," Justice Manmohan said.

Discoms had moved the court against the January 7 decision of the Aam Aadmi Party-led government ordering CAG audit, saying that the top auditor is not empowered to scrutinise accounts of private companies.

During the hearing, Prashant Bhushan, appearing for the Delhi government, opposed the plea of the discoms that CAG was not empowered to audit them and rather sought transfer of the pleas to a division bench which is hearing a PIL on the same issue.

Senior advocate Harish Salve, appearing for the Tata firm, said the CAG Act provides for "safeguard" and deals with "body and authorities", besides the central and state government and their companies, which can be subjected to an audit by CAG and private firms cannot be audited by the auditor.

"Genesis of the problem is this. I am a private company registered under the Companies Act and the Delhi government is a minority stake holder. Who will decide on the auditor and my answer is only a majority stake holder can do it," he said.

"If you (government) are ordering audit to reduce the electricity tariff then the government has no role to decide it," he said, adding the issue of CAG audit should have been decided by the Lt Governor and not by Additional Power Secretary.

Countering the plea, Bhushan said, "The dispute has not started on a clean slate. The private companies were given away the assets of erstwhile Delhi Vidyut Board worth rupees thousands of crores in consideration of Rs one. The CAG provisions provide for such an audit."

Post new comment

E-mail ID will not be published
CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

EDITORIAL OF THE DAY

  • Banks might be bracing for intense rate war for retail loans

    While select small banks have been slashing their deposit rates by five to 10 basis points over the past few weeks for short term adjustments to avoid

FC NEWSLETTER

Stay informed on our latest news!

INTERVIEWS

GV Nageswara Rao

MD & CEO, IDBI Federal Life

Timothy Moe

Goldman Sachs

Chander Mohan Sethi

CMD, Reckitt Benckiser India

COLUMNIST

Tushar Gandhi

When too little could mean too late

The calamity in Jammu and Kashmir has once again shown ...

Purnendu Ghosh

Why art and science are natural partners

Art is qualitative and is generally associated with emotions. Science ...

Shona Adhikari

A toast to established and emerging talent

This week, our focus is on upcoming exhibitions in the ...

INTERVIEWS

William D. Green

Chairman & CEO, Accenture