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SC turns down gas tariff regulation plea by PNGRB

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New Delhi: Companies supplying gas are now free to fix their own tariff with the Supreme Court turning down a plea by the Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB) seeking power to regulate prices of intra-city supplies on Wednesday.

An apex court bench, headed by Justice Dipak Misra, dismissed a PNGRB plea seeking control over the supply of gas by different companies, including Indraprastha Gas Limited, within cities.

Sunplus Corp.

The Board contended that even if it was not fixing maximum retail prices of gas. IGL and other gas companies should provide the documents related to intra-city supplies, so that it could post on its website the MRP the consumers should pay.

IGL refused to share these details with the Board.

The PNGRB challenged in the apex court a decision of Delhi High Court on June 1, 2012, which quashed the board’s order on network tariff and compression charge.

The high court held that PNGRB was not empowered to fix or regulate maximum retail price at which gas was to be sold by IGL to its consumers.

The high court also said that the Board was not empowered to fix any component of network tariff or compression charge for any entity like IGL having its own distribution network, while quashing PNGRB order dated April 9, 2012, fixing maximum retail price and requiring IGL to disclose the network tariff and compression charges to its customers.

PNGRB asked IGL in 2012 to reduce network traffic by 63 percent and ordered the company to refund the difference to customers with retrospective effect from April 1, 2008.

Among the transport fuels, compressed natural gas (CNG) has become 27 percent cheaper than diesel after reduction in natural gas prices from April 1 to 4.66 per million British thermal units (mBtu).

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After the government’s latest gas price revision, IGL cut the CNG rate to Rs.37.55 per standard cubic metre (scm).

Before the reduction, piped natural gas (PNG) was five percent costlier than subsidized cooking gas.

While announcing the cut in CNG and PNG prices on April 1, IGL said that at the revised price, the economics in favour of CNG would be over 22 percent compared to diesel-driven vehicles.

CNG also works out nearly 55 percent cheaper on running cost when compared to petrol-run vehicles.

IGL caters for about 800,000 CNG vehicles in the national capital region, including 520,000 private cars.

(IANS)

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Publishers Body Welcomes HC Order Lifting Non-NCERT Book Ban

"The ruling, in addition to providing convenience to children and parents, will also enable them to choose books depending on their preference,"

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Good education can reduce the impact of childhood abuse. Pixabay
Good education can reduce the impact of childhood abuse. Pixabay

The Association of Publishers in India (API) on Tuesday welcomed the Delhi High Court order which stipulated that sale of non-NCERT books must not be disallowed in CBSE-affiliated schools, calling the practice “discriminatory”.

“The court decision exemplifies the point that an ideal education system is the one that recognizes the role of multiple stakeholders and is learner-centric. The decision has been welcomed by not just students and parents but also by schools, private publishers, authors and others as it symbolizes ‘freedom of choice’ in education,” the representative body of publishers of academic texts said in a statement.

ALSO READ: The glorious tales of Chaar Sahibzaade to be included in NCERT syllabi

“The ruling, in addition to providing convenience to children and parents, will also enable them to choose books depending on their preference,” it said.

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Arguing that the sale of books, stationery and other items sold by the school be treated as “essential requirements”, the court last week in a decision refused to put a ban on these activities. Pixabay

 

In doing so, the court overturned the April 2017 injunction issued by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), which asked affiliating schools not to indulge in “commercial” activities.

ALSO READ: App allowing free download of all NCERT books to be launched soon

The court said the availability of uniforms, non-NCERT reference books or even food items for sale only to the students of the school does not fall in the category of and cannot at all be considered as commercialization.

Earlier in its circular, the board had asked the schools to “desist from the unhealthy practice of coercing parents to buy textbooks, notebooks, stationery, uniforms, shoes, school bags etc from within the premise or from selected vendors only” and directed them to operate as doing “community service” as per the board by-laws.

Minister of State for Human Resource Development Upendra Kushwaha, in December last year, told Parliament that CBSE has not directed students or schools to buy or prescribe NCERT books only. (IANS)

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