Duty to supply electricity as per Electricity Act, 2003, not absolute: SC

The Supreme Court (SC) has held that the duty to supply electricity under Section 43 of the Electricity Act, 2003 (Act) is not absolute and that the power distribution companies are empowered to stall new connections until pending arrears are cleared. In the order, arising out of batch of appeals, wherein the electricity supply was discontinued due to failure of previous consumers to pay dues, the SC held that a pre-condition of clearance of arrears for re-instituting the supply of electricity is valid and permissible under the scheme of the Act.