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VforVendetta

Can access to crucial information be sought from Police under RTI 2(f) in an ongoing investigation to enable filing of FIR ?

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VforVendetta

My estranged partner used Home Loan Affidavits with my forged signatures as official declarations to gain financial benefits at her place of employment ( multinational private bank ) and thereon also to wrongfully assert sole ownership claims of property falsely in Court.

- Those misleading claims have been used to file for an injunction to joint property and I have been prevented to visit my own house for many months now. The judicial process is painfully slow and she is deceitfully occupying the residence in the meanwhile with wrongful intent of usurping the property.

- All property docs showing 'joint' ownership ( purchase agreement / share certificate / HL records etc.) have been duly submitted to the Investigating Officer.

- After a long patient wait and persistence post sending of a letter from the police, the bank finally acknowledged the confirmation of usage of those forged documents along with the purpose and usage of those affidavits to the police in a hand delivered letter which the I.O. is withholding as it pretty much proves my contentions all along & would be immensely beneficial for favourable legal proceedings in criminal court to initiate CRPC 156(3) for filing an FIR. The bank officials have orally confirmed the contents of the correspondence sent to the police to me. But the police authorities at the local police station aren't allowing access to that all important document which confirms the fraud.

- Can a certified copy of that particular private bank document be applied for under RTI section 2(f) from the local police station ?

- If yes , does it have to applied for at the PIO at the ACP's office (local jurisdiction) , Mumbai Police or at the ACP-1 ( EOW ) , Commissioner's HQ ?

 

 

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Prasad GLN

Once the documents are obtained by an investigating officers, it becomes Public Documents as the purpose of such confiscation was in a crime and all crimes are against larger public interest.

However private sector bank documents are beyond ambit of RTI Act.

You can make RTI Application to SPIO of concerned Police station and get certified copies of such documents under RTI Act.

You are an affected party, and those copies are in their custody and taken the shape of public documents.

Information solicited:

1)Please provide me certified copies of all those documents obtained from..........................Bank in the process of investigation, in FIR NOO....................as I am complainant and affected party.

(As authorities confiscated the documents in a crime already registered, providing such certified copies to victim and affected complainant citizen attracts larger public interest, and there are no exemptions for information under RTI Act)

NOTE:If PIO wishes to deny the information, it is to bring his attention that he should not only quote the section but also justify the reasons as to how that information attracts the stipulation of exemption in RTI.)

Search website of Police to locate SPIO, format of Application and prescribed RTI fees remittance.

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VforVendetta

Thank you for the clarification Mr. Prasad. Deeply indebted in gratitude for the same.

I had presumed as much. With your reply I'm hopeful that I can confidently approach the authorities. During my research I had come across some relevant pointers from Shailesh Gandhi's book on the subject. Sharing it :

 

 

 

 

RTI Section 2(f) : Shailesh Gandhi’s book with comments -

*

"information" means any material in any form, including records, documents, memos, e-mails, opinions, advices, press releases, circulars, orders, logbooks, contracts, reports, papers, samples, models, data material held in any electronic form and information relating to any private body which can be accessed by a public authority under any other law for the time being in force;

 

Comment :

 

Hence, information would mean anything which exists, in any form with a public authority. The specific instances – records, documents, memos, emails, opinions, advices, reports, samples, models - are merely meant to illustrate the broad scope. Clearly, file-noting is opinion and hence covered in the ambit of the Act. Legal or other opinions obtained by Public authorities, or various reports received by them are all covered.

*

Pg*16

 

Here, it suggests an important principle regarding private bodies. Information relating to any private body, which may not be covered by the definition of ‘Public Authority’ (given in Section 2 h), can be obtained through a public authority if the law allows the public authority to access it. There is an additional view at this juncture.*

*

Thus, if any public authority has the right to ask for any information under the law from a private organisation, the citizen can seek the information from the public authority.

A few illustrative examples of how this provision can be exercised by the citizens:

 

•Information about a private bank can be obtained from the regulator - RBI - if the law requires the information to be filed.

 

•Information about a private unaided school - from the Education Department.

 

•Information about a Public Limited Company – from the Registrar of Companies or SEBI if the law empowers them to ask for it.

 

•Information about a Cooperative Society - from the Registrar of Cooperative Societies.

 

•Information about Trusts - from the Charities Commissioner.

 

•Information about various banks, including private banks - from Reserve Bank of India.

 

 

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sharmajee
Once the documents are obtained by an investigating officers, it becomes Public Documents ......

 

To my mind during investigations PIO may deny the information. Once investigation is complete and chargesheet/ FR has been filed in court than surely PIO has to give the copies under RTI act.

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Prasad GLN

@Sharmajee,

 

You are absolutely right sir.

The stipulation through HC judgments / CIC decisions it is clear, that PIO has to justify the reason as how that disclosure impede the investigation of the case. Sans this, denying this information has to be treated as deliberately malafide as per CIC decisions.

 

Presuming that kind of denial I have asked member to add the following in my reply to that member.

NOTE:If PIO wishes to deny the information, it is to bring his attention that he should not only quote the section but also justify the reasons as to how that information attracts the stipulation of exemption in RTI.)

Please correct me if I am wrong.

 

vforvendetta:

 

private entities are beyond ambit of RTI Act. One can only seek that information of Private entity, which was submitted to that Public Authority, as per procedural controls .

That means that information which is being sought must have been already available with Public Authority as per controlling mechanism.

 

If not, PIO is not obliged to collect, collate, compile by seeking that information only because a citizen as applicant has sought that information.

Please read all examples in the last para. Those authorities can provide that material form of information submitted by private entities, and if it is in their custody as a record.

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VforVendetta

A few facts for consideration :

 

- the accused is a 'lady'. Special leeway & privileges are being afforded based on that. Police taking their own sweet time to investigate half heartedly and 5 months have passed. Her formal statement hasn't even been completed on record.

 

- A summary report is yet to prepared.

 

- Police are resisting filing an FIR.

 

- Since it's a white collar crime, the complexities are not properly understood by the authorities despite repeated explanations & the conclusive evidence of fraud received from the private bank.

 

- the 'certified' copies of that evidence received by the Police can lend substantial weight & strengthen my case in the criminal court to enable passing of CRPC 156(3) to direct the police then for impounding the originals , as the intent of the crime can be proven.

 

- The Police are withholding that evidence and delaying the case. Hence the query that : can this crucial information be procured under RTI section 2(f) during the course of an 'ongoing' investigation ?

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using RTI INDIA

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Sunil Ahya

Kindly file a RTI application with the Public Information Officer of the concerned Police Station to seek a photocopy of all the documents available with them and at the end of your RTI application include the post script as follows:

Post Script:

 

1. I would hereby like to draw your kind attention to the recent decision of Hon’ble Supreme Court in Transferred Case (Civil) No. 97 of 2015 (Arising out of Transfer Petition (Civil) No. 716 of 2012) in National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development v/s. Sanjay SitaramKurhade, wherein the Hon’ble Supreme Court has upheld the reasoning given in the CIC Decision No. CIC/SG/A/2011/002405/16514, the relevant extract of which has been quoted below for your immediate reference and perusal:

 

Quote:

“The PIO has denied the information simply on the claim that such disclosure would impede the process of investigation or apprehension or prosecution of offenders. However, he has failed to explain how such disclosure would actually be an impediment to the process of investigation or apprehension or prosecution, as laid down above by the High Court of Delhi. The denial of information by the PIO appears to be a mere blanket statement not supported by any cogent evidence or material on the basis of which it can be clearly demonstrated that such disclosure would in fact attract the exemption contained in Section 8(1)(h) of the RTI Act. The PIO has failed to discharge the burden placed upon him under Section 19(5) of the RTI Act to prove that the denial of information under Section 8(1)(h) of the RTI Act was justified.”

Unquote.

 

Also please refer to the following link:

Grounds of Appeal with Respect to Section 8(1)(j) and Section 8(1)(h)

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RAVEENA_O

Mere pendency of an investigation or inquiry is by itself not a sufficient justification for withholding information. Section 8(1)(h) shall mean anything which would hamper and interfere with procedure followed in the investigation and have the effect to hold back the progress of investigation, apprehension of offenders or prosecution of offenders. However, the impediment, if alleged, must be actual and not make belief and a camouflage to deny information. To claim exemption under the said Sub-section it has to be ascertained in each case whether the claim by the public authority has any reasonable basis.

 

In this case, the investigation in question was set in motion by the Applicant himself by lodging a complaint with the Police. Therefore, disclosure of the information to Complainant cannot hamper the process of investigation. Therefore, the PIO cannot deny the information taking shelter of Sec-8(1)(h) of the Act.

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Prasad GLN

As a precaution, before denial, member was advised to write a note in RTI Application as follows:

 

NOTE:If PIO wishes to deny the information, it is to bring his attention that he should not only quote the section but also justify the reasons as to how that information attracts the stipulation of exemption in RTI.)

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VforVendetta
Kindly file a RTI application with the Public Information Officer of the concerned Police Station to seek a photocopy of all the documents available with them and at the end of your RTI application include the post script as follows:

Post Script:

 

1. I would hereby like to draw your kind attention to the recent decision of Hon’ble Supreme Court in Transferred Case (Civil) No. 97 of 2015 (Arising out of Transfer Petition (Civil) No. 716 of 2012) in National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development v/s. Sanjay SitaramKurhade, wherein the Hon’ble Supreme Court has upheld the reasoning given in the CIC Decision No. CIC/SG/A/2011/002405/16514, the relevant extract of which has been quoted below for your immediate reference and perusal:

 

Quote:

“The PIO has denied the information simply on the claim that such disclosure would impede the process of investigation or apprehension or prosecution of offenders. However, he has failed to explain how such disclosure would actually be an impediment to the process of investigation or apprehension or prosecution, as laid down above by the High Court of Delhi. The denial of information by the PIO appears to be a mere blanket statement not supported by any cogent evidence or material on the basis of which it can be clearly demonstrated that such disclosure would in fact attract the exemption contained in Section 8(1)(h) of the RTI Act. The PIO has failed to discharge the burden placed upon him under Section 19(5) of the RTI Act to prove that the denial of information under Section 8(1)(h) of the RTI Act was justified.”

Unquote.

 

Also please refer to the following link:

Grounds of Appeal with Respect to Section 8(1)(j) and Section 8(1)(h)

 

Sunil Ji. Thank you so very much. This is valuable insight.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using RTI INDIA mobile app

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VforVendetta
Mere pendency of an investigation or inquiry is by itself not a sufficient justification for withholding information. Section 8(1)(h) shall mean anything which would hamper and interfere with procedure followed in the investigation and have the effect to hold back the progress of investigation, apprehension of offenders or prosecution of offenders. However, the impediment, if alleged, must be actual and not make belief and a camouflage to deny information. To claim exemption under the said Sub-section it has to be ascertained in each case whether the claim by the public authority has any reasonable basis.

 

In this case, the investigation in question was set in motion by the Applicant himself by lodging a complaint with the Police. Therefore, disclosure of the information to Complainant cannot hamper the process of investigation. Therefore, the PIO cannot deny the information taking shelter of Sec-8(1)(h) of the Act.

 

Thank you for your response Raveena Ji Grateful for all the information shared.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using RTI INDIA mobile app

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VforVendetta
As a precaution, before denial, member was advised to write a note in RTI Application as follows:

 

NOTE:If PIO wishes to deny the information, it is to bring his attention that he should not only quote the section but also justify the reasons as to how that information attracts the stipulation of exemption in RTI.)

 

Sir , I sincerely appreciate your ceaseless contributions in extending such exemplary selfless help in enlightening all of us about the intricacies & applications of the RTI provisions. Much obliged

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using RTI INDIA mobile app

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VforVendetta
Sunil Ji. Thank you so very much. This is valuable insight.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using RTI INDIA mobile app

 

Sunil Ji , the link shared by you is of immense help to my case. Can't thank you enough for sharing the same.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using RTI INDIA mobile app

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Prasad GLN

There is a saying in Telugu " Lord Rama has never designed bridges to Lanka, in Ayodhya".

At the time of filing RTI application seek such information you want. But make sure that the information is available in material form

There are no exemptions for seeking.

Only for providing information it is the burden of PIO to look for such exemption and also for justification.

It is not citizen's duty to educate PIO, as it is the authority that has to train such PIOs.

As far as application is concerned, be simple , brief , upto the point, specify the record, and in case of doubt of denial hint a condition.

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VforVendetta

Proud to share that today, thanks to the guidance and help and resolute implementation of principles I have managed to get all the documents I was seeking from the PIO. It was a tough task because despite 2 reminders during the course of the 1 month waiting period they didn’t do anything up until the last minute.

And when I went there to collect the docs in eager anticipation I find ONLY my statement copy attached.

I had a major showdown with 6 cops there and promptly rattled out orally all the relevant information shared on this forum on my case. The PIO officers sympathised with my plight and understood that I was asserting the correct things as per law. Within 1 day they pressurised the crooked investigating officer and got ALL the documents I had asked for !!! Just in time for the RTI deadline of the 1st step ended.

 

I have a long way to go to finally prove my case but this was by far the BIGGEST BREAKTHROUGH in this fight and I wouldn’t have been able to achieve this without the support of all the people who have selflessly contributed their suggestions and offered invaluable insight to help my cause. I now have the critical evidence to take this further in the right direction. Thank you one and all. I shall remain eternally grateful for all the information shared.

 

Information is power. Satyamev Jayate !!!

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using RTI INDIA

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karira

Information is power. Satyamev Jayate !!!

 

Information is not only power........but as per one Supreme Court judgment "information is currency" !!

 

Now that you have tasted personal success with the use of RTI, please spread the RTI word around....to your family members, relatives, friends, neighbors, colleagues and anyone else who will care to listen. RTI will be of help to them also.

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karira

Thread moved to "success stories" section of the forum.

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jj99
Once the documents are obtained by an investigating officers, it becomes Public Documents as the purpose of such confiscation was in a crime and all crimes are against larger public interest.

.

 

I differ on this CIC refused me records submitted by Public authority

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