Statutes & Rules

Under the Constitution of India, electricity  is a 'concurrent' subject. Hence, the Central as well as the State governments have authority to enact legislation in regard to the power sector. The Central Government generally provides the policy framework and the State governments focus on specific issues.    Currently, the constitution,  responsibilities and accountability of the Power sector entities in India are governed by the following Central statutes, besides various State legislation:

          The Indian Electricity Act, 1910
          The Electricity (Supply) Act, 1948
          The Electricity Regulatory Commissions Act, 1998 

             The Electricity Act 2003 (in .pdf format)

Indian Electricity Act, 1910

The first Indian Electricity Act, enacted in 1903,  was a somewhat tentative measure.  The Indian Electricity Act, 1910, which replaced it, has, with numerous amendments, stood the test of time.

This Act mainly governs the relations between the consumer and the licensees supplying electrical energy to the consumer or other licensees. The Act contains provisions regarding issue of licensees to the licensees and according  sanction to other persons for the generation, distribution and supply of electrical energy, their powers and obligations, and for the taking over of their Undertakings by the State Electricity Boards, the State Government or, as the case may be, by a local authority.

The Electricity (Supply) Act, 1948

The Electricity (Supply) Act, 1948 was enacted in order to provide for the rationalisation of the production and supply of electricity and generally for taking measures conducive to electrical development. It provided the basis for the takeover of most electricity generation and distribution by the State Electricity Boards constituted under it.  Its provisions mainly govern the constitution of the Central Electricity Authority, State Electricity Boards, Generating Companies, Consultative Councils and local Advisory Committees, their statutory powers and functions. It also makes certain provisions relating to fixation of tariffs etc.  The Supply Act  empowers the State to make rules providing for management and accounts of the State Electricity Boards and to issue directions to licensees for regulating the supply, distribution, consumption or use of electrical energy for the purpose of maintaining and securing equitable distribution of energy.

Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission Act 1998

The Government of NCT of Delhi vide notification No.F.11 (28)/98-EB/341 dated 3.3.99 constituted Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission to discharge the following functions:


to determine the tariff for electricity, wholesale, bulk, grid or retail, as the case may be in the manner provided in section 29 of the Electricity Regulatory Commission Act,1998.


to determine the tariff payable for the use of the transmission facilities in the manner provided in section 29 of the Electricity Regulatory Commission Act, 1998.


to regulate power purchase and procurement process of the transmission utilities and distribution utilities including the price at which the power shall be procured from the generating companies, generating stations or from other sources of transmission, sale, distribution and supply in the National Capital Territory of Delhi.


to promote competition, efficiency and economy in the activities of the electricity Industry to achieve the objects and purposes of the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission Act, 1998.

Delhi Electricity Control Order 1959
Amendment of Delhi Electricity Control order, 1959
No. F.11(10)/95-EB/2879-91 dt. 15.02.01
No. F.11(10)/95/Power/669 dt. 8.05.02
Delhi Electricity Control Order 1959   & Delhi Vidyut Board Control Regulations 1998

The DECO 1959 came into existence under provision of section 22 B of Indian Electricity Act 1910 read with notification of Govt. of India, Min. of Home affairs no. F-2 (12)/ 59- Judl II dated 10.11.1959 to regulate transmission, distribution and utilisation of electricity and for maintaining the supply and securing equitable distribution of energy by all concerned in Union Territory of Delhi. When functions to deal with electricity were delegated to MCD under DMC act 1957 as licensee. At that time DESU was functioning as undertaking of MCD and no Board was in existence.

It was felt time and again that restrictions imposed under the provisions of DECO 1959 and by linking the policy for grant of electricity connections with building bye-laws have come in the way of DESU/ DVB to freely grant electricity connections as per actual requirements of applicants. Some of the restrictions made DESU/ DVB a tool of certain government agencies such as MCD, DPCC, DDA etc. to enforce their Bye-laws. While they themselves failed to take action, as permissible under their Rules & Regulations, for years together. This created an anomalous situation resulting into public resentment on one side due to non grant of electricity connections even to genuine applicants while on the other hand it tempted the general public to resort to drawl of electricity by unfair means, causing loss of revenue. Further the restrictions so imposed had also not yielded the desired result of enforcing Bye-laws of various other Govt. agencies.

In recent past government of NCT Delhi has considered various difficulties and approved certain amendments in DECO 1959 with particular reference to class 4 D. But these amendments were still not sufficient to enable DESU/ DVB to freely grant electricity, under different categories, at par with other state electricity boards in accordance with provisions Indian Electricity Act 1910 and supply act 1948, even after constitution of the Board under section 5 of electricity supply act 1948 vide notification no. F11(10/92) – LSG/PF-II dated 24.2.97 replacing erst-while DESU.

In order of the remove bottle necks in the year 1993 vide office order no. 23/1/92-LSG/ 13900 Dated 12.11.93 secretary LSG has constituted a committee under the chairmanship of O.P Anand the then AGM (TD) DESU, Sh. Ramesh Negi Joint Secretary (LSG), Sh. D.N. Gupta Chief Engineer NDMC and Sh. H.R. Bhatia. The then C.E (Comml.) DESU to suggest amendments in DECO 59. This committee submitted its report to secretary LSG vide no. AGM (T-D) 48/ 3088 dt.16.8.94 recommending New Delhi Electricity Control Order 1994 as per Annuxure II, replacing DECO 1959.

The Chief Secretary Govt. of NCT Delhi vide order no. F-11 (10)/EB/UD/95/8426-28 DT. 21.7.98 further constituted a committee of following members to examine each provisions of DECO 59 in light of the constitution of Delhi Vidyut Board and suggest amendments wherever necessary so as to make it more effective and relevant by 10th August 1998: -


Special Secretary UD-Chairman


Member (Tech-I) DVB-Member


Sh. H.C. Aggarwal, Consultant UD-Member

The Minister of power, Govt. of India Sh. P.R. Kumar Manglam vide letter dt. 2.6.98 wrote to Chief Minister Govt. of NCT Delhi that it has been felt that one of the reason for large scale of theft and poor revenue of DVB is due to stringent procedure of DECO 59 and the revenue position will go up if this control order is replaced. This was also felt necessary that in that event DVB can work on commercial lines and can ensure more recoveries for the same available power, it is required to distribute.

Further, anauthorised colonies have come to stay in Delhi and some of these colonies by and by are losing their residential character in violations to the provision of Master Plan/ Building Bye-laws etc due to mushroom growth of non-domestic/ Industrial/ Commercial establishments, catering the requirements of the local public, with practically no checks from concerned local bodies whose Bye-laws/ Rules and Regulations were violated in the process.

Considering the above on formulation of Delhi Vidyut Board vide notification no. F-11 (10) 92/LSG/PF-II dated 24.2.97, replacing erst-while DESU, Delhi Vidyut Board vide resolution no. 62.68/1028 A dated 9.9.98 decided the following: -


To completely repeal the DECO 59.


The policy regarding grant of electricity connection should have no linkage with the building bye-laws. However this shall be subject to resorting to disconnection of electricity and removal of meter and service line as and when concerned Govt. enforcing agency of MCD/DDA/NCT of Delhi conveys and initiate action to either pull down the illegal structure or to seal it.


Necessary fresh Regulations shall be framed under sub section J of section 79 of electricity supply act 1948 for controlling generation, distribution, transmission and utilisation of electricity. Mean while the Regulations as may be required to be enforced through executive orders.

The DVB Control Regulations as approved by DVB vide resolution no. 62/68/1028 A dated 9.9.98 are reproduced as an Annexure III.

These Control Regulations were forwarded to Chief Secretary Govt. of NCT of Delhi vide no. CHN5/Coml/2092-93 DT 15.9.98 for notification by the Govt. of NCT of Delhi replacing the existing DECO 59. The matter has also been followed up through various letters at different levels and in meetings with Chief Secretary, Chief Minister, and Hon. Lieutenant Governor.

In pursuance to above Govt. of NCT of Delhi approved short term action Plan, identified in strategy paper on power sector in Delhi. Further to check theft of power, Government approved sanction of electricity connection on demand except in areas where network is not existing. It was further conveyed vide Additional Secretary UD’s letter no. F-11 (10/96/EB/15815 Dated 4.2.99 that to facilitate sanction of electricity connection on demand, DECO 59 deemed to have been relaxed to that extent.