by Merlie Villarina Tanching

BATANGAS TRANSPORTATION COMPANY v. MANILA RAILROAD COMPANY, GR No. 45323, 1937-03-30

Facts:

This petition for a writ of certiorari puts in issue the right of the respondent Manila Railroad Company to establish a line of motor vehicles for the transportation of passengers between the City of Manila and the municipality of Batangas, Province of

Batangas, via the municipalities of Noveleta and Mendez-Nunez, Province of Cavite, with branch lines from and to certain points which are not necessary to specify here.

Petitioner challenges the right of the Manila Railroad Company to establish the line in question without first obtaining a certificate of public convenience from the Public Service Commission.

The Manila Railroad Company is a corporation organized and existing under the laws of the Philippines. It is controlled by the government which owns ninety-nine per centum of its subscribed and paid up capital stock.

By its charter the Manila Railroad Company is not only authorized to transport passengers, but to establish, maintain and operate tramways, stage lines, and "all other facilities that may be necessary or useful in the transportation of passengers and property to. from, and... between the various cities, towns, ports and places in the Philippine Islands." It seems too clear for argument that such grant cf powers is broad enough to include the operation by the company of a line of motor vehicles for the transportation of passengers between the City of

Manila and the municipality of Batangas, Province of Batangas, with such branch lines as the company may deem necessary to maintain.

Issues:

Petitioner alleges that the establishment of such a line by the Manila Railroad Company would constitute an invasion of territory over which the petitioner has certificates of public convenience; would result in ruinous and unfair competition with the established... transportation business of the petitioner; and would destroy and render valueless property and property rights of the petitioner to the amount of at least five hundred thousand pesos (P500,000), Philippine currency.

Counsel have discussed at length the scope of section 14 (c) of the Public Service Commission Act. The controversy is whether or not, under this provision of law, approval by the commission of the rates over a new line is necessary. While petitioner urges that it is, the

Manila Railroad Company claims that it is not.

Ruling:

There is no provision of law which requires approval by the Public Service Commission of the rates over a new line. It follows that in approving the rates... proposed by the Manila Railroad Company over its new line between the City of Manila and the municipality of Batangas, the commission merely recognized the right of the carrier to initiate rates.

The petition for a writ of certiorari is denied, with costs against the petitioner. So ordered.

Principles: