Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd published two circulars, no. 43 & 44, dated 23 April 2012. Through these circulars, the utility made changes to the prevailing load shedding protocol in the state. The Commission has determined the Load Shedding Protocol for the license area of MSEDCL vide its order dated November 28, 2008 in case Nos. 77 and 78 of 2008 and the same is still in force. The jurisdiction and responsibility of the commission in ensuring transparent and accountable process for load shedding has also been upheld by both Appellate Tribunal for Electricity (Judgment dated July 31, 2009 in Appeal No. 173 of 2008) and the Supreme Court (order dated 13th May, 2005) and is a legally settled issue. Hence, given this background, such unilateral decision to modify the protocol was not only seen as a breach of the principles to be followed for undertaking any change, but also a violation of the prevailing orders of the Commission and the ATE.
Therefore, Prayas Energy Group wrote a letter to the commission on 27th April 2012, drawing its attention to this matter and requesting it to intervene in the process. Based on this letter and other similar requests, the commission conducted a Suo-motu hearing in this matter on 16th May 2012. During the hearing, Prayas made a presentation regarding its views on this issue once again demanded necessary action. However, the commission refused to comment on legality of the unilateral change undertaken by MSEDCL and instead chose to form a committee to study the matter further. Prayas was also invited to be a part of the said committee but we declined to participate through our letter written to the commission on 21st May 2012 outlining our reasons for the same.