KCR faults panel probing power sector 'irregularities' during BRS regime, asks its head to step down

In a 12-page open letter, Rao said retired Justice L Narasimha Reddy, who is heading the commission, should step down from his post.
Last Updated : 15 June 2024, 16:28 IST

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Hyderabad: Former Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, who has been issued a notice by an inquiry commission looking into 'irregularities' in the power sector during the previous BRS regime, on Saturday alleged that the panel chairman's functioning has not been fair.

In a 12-page open letter, Rao said retired Justice L Narasimha Reddy, who is heading the commission, should step down from his post.

In the letter addressed to Justice Reddy, Rao elaborately highlighted the measures taken by his previous regime to address the alleged crisis in power sector that existed in Telangana before June, 2014 when his government assumed office with the formation of the new state.

Saying that his government has succeeded in supplying 24x7 power to all sectors in the state, Rao alleged that the present Congress regime had ordered the commission of inquiry "with a clear political motive and to discredit the earlier government".

Rao, also known as KCR, took objection to the comments made by Justice Reddy in a media interaction on June 11.

"An inquiry of this nature expects the chairman to show and practice neutrality and bring out truth after examining the issues from different angles. After such exercise, the report ought to be submitted to responsible persons. But I am constrained to observe that your way of functioning is contrary to the well enunciated principles and processes," Rao said.

"It is very clear that you have formed a pre-determined opinion that mistakes were committed and it is indicative of your biased view that could be reflected in the final report," he said.

It is as if the commission's chairperson is delivering the judgement even before conducting the inquiry and it does not behove the stature of a retired Chief Justice of High Court, Rao claimed.

"An inescapable conclusion after considering all these facts, is the futility of deposing anything before this commission of inquiry. Hence considering all these facts, I humbly request you to recuse yourself from the responsibilities of heading the commission of inquiry," the BRS president said.

Rao contended that the present Congress government has set up a commission of inquiry under Justice Reddy's chairmanship, bypassing the "well-known legal standing" that inquiry commissions could not be constituted against the orders of the ERC (Electricity Regulatory Commission).

Rao justified his government's decision with regard to signing PPA (Power Purchasing Agreement) with Chattisgarh, setting up Yadadri power plant and others.

Meanwhile, the ruling Congress attacked the BRS president over the letter. State Congress Working President Mahesh Kumar Goud said Rao is worried that his "mistakes" are coming out.

Why the former CM is not making an effort to prove that he had made no mistake, Goud asked.

The inquiry commission, looking into alleged irregularities in the power sector during the previous BRS government's tenure, had issued notices to Rao and several others and sought their responses as part of its ongoing probe.

Justice Reddy told reporters here on June 11 that Rao sought time till the end of July to submit the reply, but the commission told him to furnish it by June 15 as it had only a limited period available.

Published 15 June 2024, 16:28 IST

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