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Sunil Ahya Blog

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Kindly do not worry about the exemptions at the stage of filing a RTI application.

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Sunil Ahya


Kindly do not worry about the exemptions at the stage of filing a RTI application, as reasoned below:
As per section 7(1):
A PIO is supposed to either provide the information on payment of such fee as may be prescribed or reject the request for any of the reasons specified in sections 8 and 9
(Which means a PIO is supposed to either provide information or deny it under section 8 and 9).
As per section 19(5):
In any appeal proceedings, the onus to prove that a denial of a request was justified shall be on the PIO who denied the request.
(Which means that if a PIO denies the information then he is required to justify his denial)
And furthermore as per section 6(2):
An applicant making request for information shall not be required to give any reason for requesting the information or any other personal details except those that may be necessary for contacting him.
(Which means that an applicant is not required to give reasons for requesting the information)
Therefore given the provisions of section 7(1) read with section 19(5) and further read with section 6(2):
The onus i.e. the burden of proof, for either providing or not providing the information is on the PIO who approves or declines a request for information, and,
The onus is not on any RTI applicant to justify or give reasons for having sought an information, irrespective of whether such information is disclosable or exempt under RTI Act.
Thus, for the above given reasons, you as a RTI applicant need not worry about exemptions, at the stage of filing a RTI application itself.
Kindly go ahead, file a RTI application and seek all the information that you may require, let the PIO decide as to whether the information is disclosable or exempt under RTI Act and reply accordingly, study the PIO's reply and if you are not satisfied with the PIO's response, you are always at the liberty to file a first appeal against a PIO's such a decision, and likewise if you are not satisfied with the decision of your first appeal, then a second appeal before an Information Commission.
Also refer to the following links:
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