The CoS agreed to give first priority listing in natural gas allocation to city gas distributors, which sells CNG to automobiles and piped gas to households, replacing urea-manufacturing fertiliser plants
A Committee of Secretaries (CoS) has approved a rejig of natural gas allocation policy, giving city gas distribution companies like Indraprastha Gas Ltd top priority for allocation of domestically produced fuel.
The CoS approved a proposal of Oil Ministry for changes in priority ranking for gas allocation, official sources said. The issue will now go to the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) for final approval.
At present, urea-manufacturing fertiliser plants have the first right over the domestically produced gas, followed by liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) plants and power stations. City gas distribution (CGD) projects are ranked fourth in the priority list.
The CoS agreed to change this priority listing to give CGD firms like IGL, which sells CNG to automobiles and piped gas to households in the national capital, top priority, they said.
CGD firms like IGL currently get 8.32 million standard cubic meters per day of gas out of total domestic supplies of about 77 mmscmd.
As city gas projects get rolled out in new cities, the requirement of the sector will grow and so the government is now giving it top priority.
Sources said compressed natural gas (CNG) and piped natural gas (PNG) are clean fuels and will help replace subsidised diesel in automobiles and LPG in households respectively.
According to the new allocation policy, additional requirement for CGD will be first met by imposing proportionate cuts in the domestic gas presently being supplied to sectors other than priority sectors as decided by the Oil Ministry.
Plants providing inputs to strategic sectors of atomic energy and space research will get the second priority, followed by plants that can extract higher fractions from natural gas.
Gas-based urea plants will rank fourth in the priority list and power stations fifth.
Since domestic gas production is now stagnant, it is being proposed to freeze allocation to all sectors expect CGD and LPG sector, at supply levels of 2013-14.
In 2013-14, fertiliser plants received 29.79 mmscmd of gas. Power plants got 25.59 mmscmd while LPG extraction plants received 1.83 mmscmd. Petrochemical plants received 3.32 mmscmd while refineries got 1.89 mmscmd and steel plants 1.32 mmscmd.
Sources said incremental production from NELP blocks like KG-D6 and Gujarat State Petroleum Corp's (GSPC) Deendayal gas will be allocated as per the decision taken in the meeting of an Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM) on 23 August 2013.
The EGoM had decided that incremental gas would go to power plants.
The requirement of CGD project is quite small compared to power and fertiliser sectors and can be met through proportionate cuts, they said.
Chavan had challenged the notice saying that the EC did not follow procedure laid out in the Representation of People Act, while issuing the notice
The Delhi High Court on Monday stayed the showcause notice served by the Election Commission (EC) to Ashok Chavan in the paid news case against the former chief minister of Maharashtra.
Chavan had challenged the Commission's notice saying that the EC did not follow the procedure laid out in the Representation of People Act while issuing the notice.
Meanwhile, complainant's lawyer in the case, Dilip Taur said, "The court has issued a notice while hearing his petition. We are not surprised, and we will challenge it in Supreme Court. I think that this notice, which has been issued is prima facie wrong."
"We will place many of the issues that were rejected by the High Court judge in front of the Supreme Court," Taur added.
On 13th July, the Election Commission had rejected the Chavan's explanation in defence of the paid news allegations against him and had issued a showcause notice to him asking why he should not be disqualified as a member of Parliament (MP) from Nanded.
Chavan has been accused of fudging poll expenses during the 2009 Maharashtra Assembly Elections. On the directions of the Supreme Court, the EC had issued a notice to Chavan to appear before it.
What are the rights of statutory tenant, lessee and licensee?
Letting out premises is a sensitive issue. Both landlords and tenants turn hawkish in any discussion on this. The battle of owners versus occupiers would turn less hostile if each understood their limits, claiming only that which is rightfully theirs. There can be roughly three kinds of occupation – statutory tenant, lessee and licensee. Described below are the rights of each of them.
1. Statutory Tenant: A tenant is a protected species under the Maharashtra Rent Control Act, 1999 and is often aptly referred to as a statutory tenant. He can be evicted only on the limited grounds mentioned in the said Act. The most common ground being “the premises are reasonably and bona fide required by the landlord for occupation by himself or by any person for whose benefit the premises is held.” It is justifiable that ‘destruction of the premises by the tenant’ gives the landlord the right to seek repossession of his property and end the tenancy. Change of use, as well as/or non-use of the premises by the tenant for a continuous period of six months, is yet another ground for eviction under section 16 of the Rent Control Act.
A statutory tenant pays a nominal rent. Upon his death, any relative residing with him at the time of his demise steps into the former’s shoes by law. No testamentary bequest can be made by the tenant in respect of his tenancy rights nor can he transfer, mortgage, sub-let, give on license basis, or otherwise part with his tenancy rights. A tenancy is a creation of the statute and lives as well as falls as by the provisions thereof. Any transgression may cost a tenant dear.
2. Lessee: In the hierarchy of possessory rights, the position of the lessee is far superior. Here, the Transfer of Property Act comes into play. It is a transfer of a right to enjoy property by the lessor/owner in favour of the lessee, so much so that, unless there is a contract or a local usage to the contrary, a lessee can assign, sub-lease, mortgage, or part with his interest in the property. A lessee does not live under the fear that, on the grounds of bona fide requirements his lessor will have him evicted from the premises. He breathes freer air. It is not unusual to come across leases for a term of 100 years or even in perpetuity. There is precious little that an owner can do once he has leased out his property.
3. Licensee: A licensee finds a place for himself at the bottom of the pyramid. He has no interest whatsoever in the premises. As suggested by the term ‘license’, a licensee occupies premises at the pleasure of the licensor/owner.
In wonderful legalese, section 52 of the Indian Easement Act, 1882 defines ‘license’ as follows. “Where one person grants to another, or to a definite number of other persons, a right to do, or continue to do, in or upon the immovable property of the grantor, something which would, in the absence of such right, be unlawful, and such right does not amount to an easement or an interest in the property, the right is called a license”.
This wafer thin right is therefore regarded as the safest option by premises owners in Mumbai. And why not: if a licensee refuses to vacate residential premises, under the Rent Act, a fast track Competent Authority can decide on matters governing eviction and mesne profits. Mesne profits can be as much as twice the license fee fixed under the agreement.
Needless to add, all the three types of instruments- tenancy agreement, lease deed and a leave and license agreement- are compulsorily registerable. Not registering of a tenancy or a leave and license agreement can land the landlord/owner behind bars for a term extending up to three months!
(Divya B Malcolm is a senior associate with Kochhar & Co. The views expressed are her own and not to be construed as legal advice)