Lifts the earlier ban on ESE (Early Streamer Emission) lightning protection systems. The court clarified that the decision lies with the consumers to decide which technology to purchase.
January 06, 2023: The Karnataka High court issued an order to lift the earlier ban on ESE (Early Streamer Emission) proposed under the NBC 2016. Ruling in favour of the Lightning Protection India Association (LPIA) the Court suggested that it is up to the consumer and their preferences to decide which lightning protection system to install. The court further clarified that The National Building Code of India (NBC), is expected to be a neutral document and should not hold an affirmative stance on any particular technology, thereby disbarring it from the authority of banning any technology goods (such as ESE).
ESE systems have been used in India for more than 20 years, with thousands of ESE installations to protect numerous government and private sites. ESE terminals have been installed in many of India’s historical structures including The Red Fort, The Parliament House, Town Hall of Bangalore and in Mysore Palace. With millions of sites worldwide, the ESE efficiency and reliability to protect human beings and assets is proven and well admitted.
In 2016, the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) circulated The National Building Code of India (NBC) wherein it was mentioned that ESE (Early Streamer Emission), a world-famous lightning protection technology, is banned in India with words, ‘Shall not be acceptable.’ In the draft circulated in 2014 by BIS nothing adverse against ESE was mentioned, quite in contrast to the final version published in 2016. The writ petition was filed by LPIA before the Karnataka High court, against BIS, questioning the ban on ESE.
The effect of the judgment is that there is no specific ban on the manufacture, production, distribution, and usage of ESE technology in India. The Honorable High Court also clarified that the NBC lacks enforceability on its own and it is merely a ‘voluntary model code’ and ‘a guiding document’. Resultantly LPIA need not have any apprehension regarding its business.
Speaking about the verdict, Mr. Vinod Viswanathan, President, Lightning Protection India Association said, “This has been a momentous decision for the ESE lightning protection engineering community in India. The ban described in NBC affected the bulk of our operations, making the last few years quite challenging. However, in the light of the Court verdict, now that the consumer has the liberty to choose their lightning protection system without any bias or influence, we are optimistic and hopeful for a better future. “