Provide power infrastructure, HC tells builders

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GURGAON: In a reprieve for residents reeling under electricity shortage, Punjab and Haryana high court has issued notices to private builders, who fail to provide electricity infrastructure like space for building substations to the electricity department in the housing projects built by them.

Punjab and Haryana high court on September 6 issued a notice to all offending builders and colonizers in the state who have failed to comply with the provisions of the Electricity Act 2003 and who have failed to provide electricity infrastructure including constructions of substations in housing societies and residential colonies constructed by them.

This order was issued by a bench comprising Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Justice George Masih while hearing an appeal filed by the Dakshin Haryana Biji Vitran Nigam (DHBVN) against orders passed earlier by a single judge which had directed the DHBVN to give electricity connection to a resident who had taken a plot in a colony in which there was no electricity infrastructure provided for by the colonizer.

Appearing on behalf of the DHBVN, senior advocate Atul Nanda, along with advocate Ravi Prakash, submitted to the high court that there was a large-scale mushrooming of colonies where the builders and colonizers obtain licences for developments, and sell plots without ensuring that there is adequate electrical infrastructure in the colony.

This is to the detriment of hapless residents and consumers, who pay sums of money to the colonizer at the time of purchase of the plot only to discover later that there is no electrical infrastructure which was to be provided by the colonizer to the DHBVN. They said this was despite undertakings in writing given by such colonizers to the Haryana Electricity Regulatory Commission (HERC) and despite notices issued by the DHBVN.

The court has directed the DHBVN to make all such builders, the director, town & country planning, Haryana, as well as the Haryana Electricity Regulatory Commission as parties to proceedings and has fixed the next hearing on September 25. The power department officials in Gurgaon hailed the directive and claimed that this would help the residents.

“In cities like Gurgaon and Faridabad, there are many residents who are fighting against private developers who have sold the houses but failed to provide them proper electricity supply and infrastructure. We are willing to provide the electricity supply if we are given the needed space to build the substations,” said an official.


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