The Supreme Court bench headed by Justice SK Kaul disapproved the act Centre for not being able to appoint a judicial member in the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) since the last four months. It held that allowing the Executive to act in violation of court orders will be “an invitation to anarchy”.
The court also rejected the request by the government and the CERC to let the commission resume its work, saying the court cannot help consumers when the “government does not seem to be interested in coming to the aid of the consumers or making the commission functional”.
The Apex court already ordered the CERC and all state commissions to make certain they appoint a member-law in 2018 itself. Member appointed must be either a sitting or a retired judge or a person with substantial knowledge and practice of the law whenever the next vacancy arises.
Subsequently, a contempt plea was moved this year to point out that the government had appointed two members in the CERC without complying with the judgment to first appoint a member-law.
While hearing the case the court pointed out that around 177 judgments were pending disposal before CERC. It also said that- “The Executive cannot be expected to act nor permitted to act in breach of the judgment of this court. This would be an invitation to anarchy! The mutual respect of the three pillars of democracy requires each of them to respect the role and functioning of the other.”