The Centre on Thursday informed the Supreme Court that Tamil Nadu has to be blamed for the power crisis it is facing as it had not strengthened the grid for receiving surplus power.

Attorney General G. E. Vahanvati, appearing for the Centre, told a three-Judge Bench of Chief Justice Altamas Kabir and Justices S.S. Nijjar and J. Chelameswar that as far as the power surrendered by the National Capital Territory of Delhi was concerned, the Centre in 2011 had tried to allocate Tamil Nadu additional power. For this year, he said, according to the Union Power Ministry every grid had certain capacity. The southern grid did not have the capacity to receive the available surplus power.

“The Tamil Nadu Government,” Mr. Vahanvati said, ‘had not strengthened the grid enough and the State itself is responsible for the power crisis. Eight States are demanding a share in the surrendered power and we will distribute it in a manner that each grid can withstand.”

Senior counsel Mukul Rohatgi, senior counsel Ranjit Kumar and Additional Advocate General Subramonium Prasad wanted the Court to issue a direction to the Centre to keep aside the surrendered power, as otherwise the whole suit filed by Tamil Nadu would become infructuous.

The AG replied that the surplus power could not be stored.

CJI told counsel for Tamil Nadu, “We are not experts in deciding the matter. We need technical details from an expert body.”

In a brief order, the Bench said, “Issue notice. On behalf of the Union of India, there are certain difficulties expressed in providing power straightway. With regard to the capacity of the southern grid to take the load of excess power to be provided to Tamil Nadu, the Attorney General is requested to file an affidavit indicating the reasons for which the prayer of Tamil Nadu cannot be considered to a certain extent.”

In the meantime, the Bench said since it concerned technical position, the Central Electricity Authority should examine and submit a report to the court. The Bench directed the matter to be listed for further hearing on November 29.

In its application filed in the suit, Tamil Nadu sought a direction to restrain the Centre from re-allocating the entire power surrendered by the National Capital Territory (NCT) of Delhi, viz 230 MW of round-the-clock power and 1491 MW power (available between midnight and 6 am) to any other State.

  • Says grid not strengthened to receive surplus power

  • Central Electricity Authority asked to submit report to court