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sidmis

Govt has to disclose info on corruption in even pvt firms

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sidmis

RTI means Govt has to disclose info on corruption in even pvt firms: CIC

As Reported by Ganesh Pandey in Indian Express

New Delhi

Posted online: Friday, January 11, 2008 at 0106 hrs

 

The Central Information Commission (CIC) hasheld that the Government or a public authority, under the Right toInformation Act, has to provide information it has on any company, publicor private, despite the company’s refusal to part with such information.

 

Information commissioner M M Ansari said that a public authority cannottake refuge to “third party exemption” under the RTI Act to denyinformation merely because the company concerned has not concurred withsuch disclosure.“A major concern of the RTI Act is to contain corruption. The disclosure ofinformation relating to corrupt practices of public/private companies is,therefore, largely in public interest” the CIC observed.

 

The CIC’s order came on an appeal filed by Anil Kumar Sharma of Jabalpurwho sought certain information from Registrar of Companies (Ministry ofCompany Affairs) regarding a company of which he is a shareholder. In hisapplication, he alleged the company had been conducting its businessactivities in an “illegal manner” and has thus earned profit throughcorrupt practices.

 

The requisite information was denied on the grounds thatthe company concerned did not permit the disclosure of information askedfor by the appellant and hence cannot be divulged without expressconcurrence of the company.Rejecting this argument, the CIC said that as the matter pertained toalleged corruption, disclosure of information was largely in the publicinterest and any exemption under Section 8(1)(d) of the Act — whichprotects from disclosure, information relating to commercial confidence,trade secrets or intellectual property, the disclosure of which would harmthe competitive position of a third party — is untenable.

 

Directing the Registrar of Companies to acquire the information asked forand furnish it to the appellant within 15 days, the CIC said: “Theallegations made by the appellant about the illegal activities of theCompany in question should have been investigated by the competent body,mainly the Registrar of Companies.

 

However since this was not done, the appellant is advised to approach the competent authority to investigate the allegations made by him so as to find the facts in the matter.

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sidmis

Here's the Link to above decision.

 

Decision:

 

5. A major concern of the RTI Act is to contain corruption. The disclosure of information relating to corrupt practices of public/private companies is, therefore, largely in public interest. The allegations made by the appellant about the illegal activities of the Company in question should have been investigated by the competent body, mainly the respondent. It does not seem to have been done.

The appellant is, therefore, advised to approach the competent authority to investigate the allegations made by him so as to find the facts in the matter or to establish that allegations, as above, are motivated for promoting personal interest of the appellant.

 

6. As the matter pertains to alleged corruption, disclosure of information is

largely in public interest. Denial of information u/s 8(1)(d) of the Act, after having

shown the entire records to the appellant is, therefore, untenable.

 

7. The CPIO is, therefore, directed to acquire the information asked for u/s

2(f) of the Act, and furnish to the appellant, within 15 working days from the date

of issue of this decision.

8. The appeal is accordingly disposed of.

 

Sd/-

(Prof. M.M. Ansari)

Information Commissioner

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abhijeet

In that case any Registrar of Co operative Societies of State Govt . should also furnish information related with the different Co operatve Societies under its control. If any body can provide specific direction/ decision of CIC in this respect , it will be very much helpful to us. The Registrar concerned is always avoiding any reply by saying that -- it is the matter of the concerned Co operative Society, the Registrar is nothing to comment and thus helping all the corrupt practice of different Co operative Societies.

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karira
In that case any Registrar of Co operative Societies of State Govt . should also furnish information related with the different Co operatve Societies under its control. If any body can provide specific direction/ decision of CIC in this respect , it will be very much helpful to us. The Registrar concerned is always avoiding any reply by saying that -- it is the matter of the concerned Co operative Society, the Registrar is nothing to comment and thus helping all the corrupt practice of different Co operative Societies.

 

Here are some CIC decisions of relevance to you:

 

http://cic.gov.in/CIC-Orders/Decision_11092007_16.pdf

http://cic.gov.in/CIC-Orders/Decision_19092007_25.pdf

http://cic.gov.in/CIC-Orders/Decision_19092007_28.pdf

http://www.cic.gov.in/CIC-Orders/Decision_20072006_1.pdf

http://cic.gov.in/CIC-Orders/Decision_13062007_32.pdf

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abhijeet

I am really grateful on receiving your valuable suggestions as and when asked for. You had mentioned regarding filing contempt petition for violation of court's direction. But as the violation occurred long back, we were told that it is time-barred. After RTI activities only development is that the PA had admitted the fact that it did not carry out court's verdict. One case is pending for adjudication , we should utilize the 'information' received. But normally the corrupt persons are very much powerful, and as such we could not arrange for a single hearing for the last 3 years. So the situation is not favourable , it seems . I would explain it more in a subsequent pm. Thank you for youe keen interest and fruitful suggestios .

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  • Similar Content

    • aparna
      By aparna
      As I can see from the Act the principal aim of the act seems to motivate people and encouraging them to have information about the working of the system to see that it works efficiently.
       
      But it is said that poverty alleviation is also the aim of this act. I cannot forsee how that can be achieved?
       
      Any views?
    • nirmalbiswas
      By nirmalbiswas
      I beleive in this last 50 years or even more after we have got our independence this is the first time that our Government has sincerely thought of nailing the corrupt officials and has brought this ACT. No doubt the corrupt officials and people in power on the other hand are thinking out ways and means as to how to dilute this act so as not to pass the information regarding the wrong things they do or might do. One of this was not to give information regarding what ever has been dealt on corresponding side before an order has been passed. I beleive we all Government officers who are non corrupt, have nothing to fear from this act and should whole heartedly support this act and make it more stronger.
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