New Delhi [India], February 23 (ANI): The Delhi High Court on Wednesday stayed notices issued by the Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB) declaring Gail Gas Limited and its subsidiaries City Gas Distribution Network a common carrier and contract carrier.
The bench of Justice DN Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh passed an interim order staying the operation and implementation of the Public Notices dated September 13, 2021, and Hearing Notices issued by PNGRB to GGL till the next date of hearing.
These notices issued by PNGRB was regarding inviting comments and holding a hearing regarding the declaration of the following geographical areas as a common carrier or contract carrier.
The notices challenged by Gail Gas Limited and its subsidiaries were issued under the PNGRB (Guiding Principles for Declaring City or Local Natural Gas Distribution Network as Common Carrie or Contract Carrier) Regulations, 2020.
Darpan Wadhwa, Senior Advocate appeared and argued on behalf of the PSUs. Where he was advised and represented by a legal team of Karanjawala & Co. comprising of Ruby Singh Ahuja, Hancy Maini, Akanksha Thapa and Lakshya Khanna.
Lawyers argued that the aforesaid notices were ultra vires as per the PNGRB Act and suffered from 'procedural ultra vires' as they were passed in the absence of Member (Legal) of the Board.
The Petitioner also challenged the "Guiding Principles Regulations" and argued that they are ultra vires of the provisions of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board Act, 2006 ("PNGRB Act").
Petitioner stated that by virtue of the Meeting Amendment Regulations the quorum of members has been reduced from three to two members and has resulted in a substantial change in the decision-making process of the Board.
"As per the earlier un-amended Regulations, out of the five members of the Board, presence of a minimum of three members was necessary for a meeting of the Board and decisions were supposed to be taken by majority. With the amended Meeting Amendment Regulations, it has been limited to only two members," stated plea
They further pleaded that making the quorum of the Board as two is contrary to the basic structure of the Board and is also against the basic principles of the decision-making process mentioned in the PNGRB Act itself. (ANI)