Reconsider removal of DERC chief, Kejriwal urges Jung

Reconsider removal of DERC chief, Kejriwal urges Jung

New Delhi, Sep 23 (IANS) Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday urged Lt. Governor Najeeb Jung to “reconsider” his order removing Krishna Saini as Chairperson of the Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission (DERC).

Declaring his appointment as void ‘ab initio’ after a period of six months may lead to serious setbacks as all DERC decisions taken during this period will also become “null and void”, the Chief Minister said in a letter to Jung.

Former Chief Income Tax Commissioner Krishna Saini was on March 5 appointed the new DERC chief succeeding P.D. Sudhakar, who retired on January 29.

The Chief Minister said that since his appointment, Saini — a 1981-batch Indian Revenue Service officer — had taken various measures in the interest of consumers, including making provision for compensation by discoms for unscheduled power cuts, allowing individual metering in group cooperative societies and imposing penalities on discoms for various lapses.

Kejriwal said the entire selection process (for DERC chief) was conducted in a fair and transparent manner.

“The Selection Committee was headed by a retired High Court judge and included the Chairman, CERC (Central Electricity Regulatory Commission), and the Chief Secretary as members… The only infirmity observed by the Lt. Governor is the lack of approval by him,” Kejriwal wrote in the 29-page missive.

Calling it a “curable defect”, he requested the Lt. Governor to review his order.

Referring to the High Court order that held that the Lt. Governor was the administrative head of the Delhi government, Kejriwal said the judgement has since been challenged in the Supreme Court.

“Since the matter is sub judice, it would only be appropriate that we await the final orders of the Supreme Court,” he said.

Jung had on Wednesday scrapped the appointment of Saini as DERC chief and asked the Delhi government to start the selection process afresh as per law.

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