SC sets aside PHC order in load shedding case

Notes that NEPRA, tribunals are proper forums to file complaint against distribution companies

Jahanzeb Abbasi October 18, 2023


The Supreme Court has set aside an order from the Peshawar High Court (PHC) that instructed the Peshawar Electric Supply Company (PESCO) to ensure uninterrupted power supply to consumers in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) province who pay their bills on time.

A three-member bench, led by Justice Ijazul Ahsan, accepted PESCO's appeal against the PHC order on Tuesday, ruling that the high court's decision to end load shedding is contrary to the law.

The court emphasized that individuals affected by load shedding should seek relief through the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA). According to the law, Nepra and tribunals are established to handle complaints against power distribution companies like PESCO. Given the existence of these forums, the high court cannot issue direct orders.

During the hearing, the lawyer representing PESCO informed the court that the PHC had ordered the filing of cases against the power company's officials in load shedding cases. He argued that load shedding is a national issue.

Justice Munib Akhtar, a member of the bench, noted that there might be several technical aspects in this matter that the court cannot address and asked what would be done in cases where PESCO is not receiving payments from feeders.


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