Delhi govt moves SC for restoring CNG allocation

Written by fe Bureau | New Delhi | Updated: Jan 30 2014, 09:49am hrs
In a bid to reduce the price of CNG, the Delhi government on Wednesday moved the Supreme Court against the Centre's decision to cut allocation of cheaper CNG to the national capital.

The Aam Admi Party-led government has also sought to initiate contempt proceedings against oil ministry officials for deliberate and willful violation of the apex court's order of April 5, 2002, in the MC Mehta case that asked the Union government to give priority to the transport sector in allocation of CNG to check pollution.

The total demand of CNG for the transport and domestic sector in the NCT of Delhi is 2.72 MMSCMD (domestic sector demand being roughly in the range of about 0.1-0.2 MMSCMD) and, till recently, the Centre had allocated only about 2.03 MMSCMD for the Delhi despite availability of the domestic gas, it said, while seeking restoration of Delhi's quota of CNG allocation under the administered price mechanism.

Despite the clear direction, the ministry of petroleum and natural gas is not allocating CNG to the transport sector in the NCT, due to which the distributor in Delhi is constrained to import CNG at much higher prices, thus leading to increase in the price of CNG being sold to the transport sector, the contempt petition filed through counsel Manish Bishnoi stated.

It said that because of these combined efforts of all, NCT of Delhi has the biggest number of CNG using vehicles totalling to 5,13,936, including 6,9907 cars, 17,722 buses, 77,110 private three-wheelers and others.

Any reduction in allocation of CNG to Delhi would not only increase the prices of CNG but also have a further impact on rising of prices of essential commodities as well as discourage the use of CNG, the Delhi government said.

The CNG prices were hiked by a steep R4.50 per kg on December 26, two days before Arvind Kejriwal assumed power. The move was questioned by Kejriwal and he had promised to examine ways to cut the rates.