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Aires Rodrigues

Governor and Raj Bhavan under the purview of RTI

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karira

As reported by UNI in newkerala.com on 21 January 2011:

Goa Governor not entitled to constitutional immunity in RTI - World News, 129336

 

Goa Governor not entitled to constitutional immunity in RTI

 

Panji, Jn 21 : Advocate Aires Rodrigues today submitted before the Goa State Information Commission that Governor S S Sidhu was not entitled to any constitutional immunity in the complaint filed against him under the Right to Information Act.

 

In an eleven page affidavit filed before the Commission, Mr Rodrigues stated that the Governor's plea for immunity under Article 361 of the Constitution was totally misconceived.

 

State Chief Information Commissioner Motilal Keny will hear oral arguments on the Governor's plea on February 4.

 

Advocate Rodrigues in his affidavit stated that though the notice was issued to the Governor, he has in utter disrespect chosen not to respond to the notice and instead a reply has been filed by his Secretary claiming constitutional immunity for the Governor under Article 361 of the Constitution.

 

Stating that a claim for constitutional immunity, if any, can be raised only by the Governor and not by his Secretary, Mr Rodrigues stated there was nothing on record to show that the Governor had authorised his Secretary to file the reply before the State Information Commission.

 

Stating that as a constitutional authority he has to ensure that the Constitution and the laws of the land are obeyed, Mr Rodrigues submitted that the Governor can not act in defiance of law and he can not on one hand claim constitutional immunity and on the other claim that he is not a public authority.

 

Mr Rodrigues said the Governor had to be made a party to the complaint as the reason given for denial of the information was that the Governor was not a public authority under the RTI Act.

 

He said that if the Governor claims that he is not a public authority to deny information, then he can not, in the same breath, claim any constitutional immunity.

 

Mr Rodrigues, in his affidavit, stated that the Governor had to be made a party to the proceedings as he was a necessary party to defend the claim that he was not a public authority.

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karira

As reported by UNI in newkerala.com on 04 February 2011:

RTI case: Goa Information Commissioner hears arguments - World News, 140078

 

RTI case: Goa Information Commissioner hears arguments

 

Panaji, Feb 4 : Goa Chief Information Commissioner Motilal Keny heard arguments on Governor Dr S S Sidhu's plea for constitutional immunity in the complaint filed against him by Advocate Aires Rodrigues under the Right to Information Act.

 

The commission will pronounce its order on February 18.

 

Advocate Carlos Ferreira and Advocate Mahesh Sonak, appearing on behalf of the Secretary to the Governor argued that the Governor was entitled for constitutional immunity and could not be made a party to the complaint.

 

Rodrigues, however, argued that the Goa Governor was not entitled to any constitutional immunity in the complaint filed against him under the Right to Information Act and that the Governor's plea for immunity under Article 361 of the constitution was totally misconceived.

 

Rodrigues submitted before the Commission that though the notice was issued to the Governor he has in utter disrespect chosen not to respond to the notice and instead a reply has been filed by his Secretary claiming constitutional immunity for the Governor under Article 361 of the Constitution of India.

 

Stating that a claim for constitutional immunity if any can be raised only by Dr Sidhu and not by his Secretary, Rodrigues submitted that there was nothing on record to show that the Governor had authorised his Secretary to file the reply before the State Information Commission.

 

Rodrigues also stated that it was a crying shame that a claim for constitutional immunity is made on behalf of the Governor when it was claimed in the same breath that he is not a Public authority.

 

Stating that as a constitutional authority the Governor has to ensure that the constitution and the laws of the land are obeyed, Adv Rodrigues argued that the Governor cannot act in defiance of law and he cannot on one hand claim constitutional immunity and on the other claim that he is not a Public authority.

 

Rodrigues also submitted that the Governor had to be made a party to the complaint as the reason given for denial of the information was that the Governor was not a Public authority under the RTI Act.

 

Rodrigues further submitted that if the Governor claims that he is not a public authority to deny information, then he cannot in the same breath claim any constitutional immunity.

 

He submitted that the law has to be complied with and not made a mockery of as was sought to be done by the Governor in taking a totally uncalled for and absurd stand that he is not a Public authority. Rodrigues also urged the Commission to issue a fresh notice to the Governor.

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Atul Patankar

As reported at newkerala.com on 4 February, 2010

 

RTI case: Goa Information Commissioner hears arguments

 

Panaji, Feb 4 : Goa Chief Information Commissioner Motilal Keny heard arguments on Governor Dr S S Sidhu's plea for constitutional immunity in the complaint filed against him by Advocate Aires Rodrigues under the Right to Information Act.

 

The commission will pronounce its order on February 18.

 

Advocate Carlos Ferreira and Advocate Mahesh Sonak, appearing on behalf of the Secretary to the Governor argued that the Governor was entitled for constitutional immunity and could not be made a party to the complaint.

 

Rodrigues, however, argued that the Goa Governor was not entitled to any constitutional immunity in the complaint filed against him under the Right to Information Act and that the Governor's plea for immunity under Article 361 of the constitution was totally misconceived.

 

Rodrigues submitted before the Commission that though the notice was issued to the Governor he has in utter disrespect chosen not to respond to the notice and instead a reply has been filed by his Secretary claiming constitutional immunity for the Governor under Article 361 of the Constitution of India.

 

Stating that a claim for constitutional immunity if any can be raised only by Dr Sidhu and not by his Secretary, Rodrigues submitted that there was nothing on record to show that the Governor had authorised his Secretary to file the reply before the State Information Commission.

 

Rodrigues also stated that it was a crying shame that a claim for constitutional immunity is made on behalf of the Governor when it was claimed in the same breath that he is not a Public authority.

 

Stating that as a constitutional authority the Governor has to ensure that the constitution and the laws of the land are obeyed, Adv Rodrigues argued that the Governor cannot act in defiance of law and he cannot on one hand claim constitutional immunity and on the other claim that he is not a Public authority.

 

Rodrigues also submitted that the Governor had to be made a party to the complaint as the reason given for denial of the information was that the Governor was not a Public authority under the RTI Act.

 

Rodrigues further submitted that if the Governor claims that he is not a public authority to deny information, then he cannot in the same breath claim any constitutional immunity.

 

He submitted that the law has to be complied with and not made a mockery of as was sought to be done by the Governor in taking a totally uncalled for and absurd stand that he is not a Public authority. Rodrigues also urged the Commission to issue a fresh notice to the Governor.

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karira

As reported by UNI in newkerala.com on 18 March 2011:

Verdict on Right to Information complait against Goa Governor on March 24 - World News, 171381

 

Verdict on Right to Information complaint against Goa Governor on March 24

 

Panaji, Mar 18 : Goa Chief Information Commissioner Motilal Kenny will on March 24 pronounce his order on whether state Governor Shivinder Singh Sidhu's is a 'Public Authority' under the Right to Information Act.

 

When the matter came up for hearing today Mr Kenny stated that he would hear final arguments on March 23 on the complaint filed by Advocate Aires Rodrigues against the Goa Governor.

 

Rodrigues urged the Chief State Information Commissioner to expeditiously decide the matter as the violation of the law by the Head of the State was a very bad precedent and obstructing the enforcement of the RTI Act in the state.

 

Rodrigues’s complaint against Governor Sidhu follows the stand taken by the Raj Bhavan that the Governor of Goa is not a public authority and does not come within the purview of the RTI Act.

 

He had sought from Goa Raj Bhavan under the Right to Information Act details of action taken on the complaints made by him to the Governor of Goa against Advocate General of the state Subodh Kantak. Rodrigues had also sought copies of noting sheets and correspondence pertaining to the processing of his complaints against the Advocate General.

 

Rodrigues in his petition before the State Information Commission has stated that the office of the Governor is a constitutional post within the definition of 'Public authority' under section 2 (h) (a) of the RTI Act.

 

He stated that as the Governor is a public authority the Raj Bhavan was bound to furnish the information sought and that the refusal to furnish information was unreasonable, malafide and without reasonable cause.

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karira

As reported by UNI in newkerala.com on 25 March 2011:

Verdict on RTI complaints against Goa Governor on Mar 31 - World News, 176021

 

Verdict on RTI complaints against Goa Governor on Mar 31

 

Panaji, Mar 25 : Goa State Chief Information Commissioner Motilal Kenny will deliver his verdict on March 31 on a complaint filed by city-based social activist advocate Aires Rodrigues against Governor S S Sidhu for not complying with the RTI Act.

 

The State Chief Information Commissioner today heard final arguments in the matter. Adv Carlos Ferreira and Adv Mahesh Sonak, appearing for the Raj Bhavan, argued that the Governor of Goa was not a 'Public Authority'.

 

Mr Rodrigues, however, contended that the violation of the law by the Head of the State was a very bad precedent and was obstructing the enforcement of the RTI Act in the state.

 

Pointing out that even the President of India as a Public Authority was complying with the provisions of the RTI Act, Adv Rodrigues submitted that Dr Sidhu was the only Governor in the country who was not complying with the RTI act, while claiming that he was not a 'Public Authority'.

 

Adv Rodrigues’ complaint against Dr Sidhu follows the stand taken by the Raj Bhavan that the Governor is not a public authority and does not come under the purview of the RTI Act.

 

Adv Rodrigues had sought from the Raj Bhavan, under the Right to Information Act, details of action taken on the complaints made by him to the Governor against Advocate General of Goa Subodh Kantak. He had also sought copies of noting sheets and correspondence pertaining to the processing of his complaints against the Advocate General.

 

Adv Rodrigues, in his petition, before the State Information Commission has stated that the office of the Governor is a constitutional post within the definition of 'public authority' under section 2(h)(a) of the RTI Act.

 

Adv Rodrigues has stated that as the Governor is a public authority the Raj Bhavan was bound to furnish the information sought and that the refusal to furnish information was unreasonable, malafide and without reasonable cause.

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karira

As reported in timesofindia.indiatimes.com on 29 March 2011:

SIC does volte-face on summons to governor - The Times of India

 

SIC does volte-face on summons to governor

 

PANAJI: The State Information Commission (SIC) which had earlier summoned governor S S Sidhu for denying information under the Right To Information (RTI) Act stating that the governor's office is not a public authority, has now passed an order stating that there is no need for Sidhu to appear personally before the commission.

 

"This present complaint is under the RTI Act. As far as this commission is concerned, the public information officer is the proper and necessary party. Under the RTI, the PIO is the interface between the public authority to which he belongs and a citizen seeking information from the public authority. In fact, he is the fulcrum around which the RTI Act operates. In view of this position, the governor need not appear personally," said state chief information commissioner MS Keny, in his order.

 

Though the commission has said that the governor need not appear in person before the SIC, the decision regarding the dismissal of the complaint against Sidhu will be considered while dealing with the main complaint, Keny added.

 

SIC had sent a notice directing the governor to personally appear before the commission, after Sidhu's office had refused to part with information sought by social activist Aires Rodrigues about action taken against advocate general Subodh Kantak. The action had been initiated based on a complaint filed by Rodrigues before the SIC, headed by retired Mumbai sessions judge Motilal Keny, stating that he was refused information under the RTI Act by the governor's office. While denying information, the governor's office had written to Rodrigues claiming that the governor is not a public authority and therefore does not come within the purview of the RTI Act.

 

In the RTI application filed by Rodrigues, he also sought copies of noting sheets and correspondence pertaining to the processing of his complaints against Kantak. The notice sent to the governor had said: "You are required to appear in person before this commission and not to depart without leave of the commission, and you are hereby warned that if you shall, without just excuse, neglect or refuse to appear on the aforesaid date and time, failing which the complaint will be decided in your absence."

 

The social activist in his complaint to the commission had said that the office of the governor is a constitutional post within the definition of "public authority" under Section 2 (h) (a) of the RTI Act. He had said that as the governor has been notified as a public authority, he is bound to furnish the information sought and that the refusal is contrary to the RTI Act and is also unreasonable, malafide and without reasonable cause.

 

However, appearing on behalf of the governor, advocate Carlos Alvares Ferreira contended that by virtue of Article 361, the Constitution of India, there is absolute protection, privilege and immunity to the governor of a state for the exercise and performance of the powers and duties of his office or for any act done or purporting to be done by him in the exercise and performance of those powers and duties, and hence the governor couldn't be arrayed as a party in the proceedings.

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Atul Patankar

As reported by John Edwards at indiablooms.com on March 31, 2011

 

Goa Raj Bhavan office covered under RTI

 

Panaji, Mar 31(IBNS) The Goa State Chief Information Commission on Thursday ruled that the Goa Governor was a “Public Authority” and does come within the ambit of the Right to Information (RTI) Act.

 

 

Pronouncing his verdict on the complaint filed by advocate Aires Rodrigues against Governor Dr S S Sidhu for not complying with the RTI Act, Commissioner Motilal Kenny directed the Public Information Officer at Goa Raj Bhavan to furnish within 30 days the information sought by Rodrigues under the RTI Act.

 

The complaint against Governor Sidhu follows the stand taken by the Raj Bhavan that the Governor of Goa is not a public authority and does not come within the purview of the RTI Act.

 

Rodrigues had sought details of action taken on the complaints made by him to the Governor against Advocate General (AG) of Goa Subodh Kantak.

 

He had also sought copies of noting sheets and correspondence pertaining to the processing of his complaints against the AG.

 

In his petition before the Commission, Rodrigues stated that the office of the Governor is a constitutional post within the definition of “Public authority” under section 2 (h) (a) of the RTI Act.

 

He also argued that the Governor was bound to furnish the information and that the refusal to furnish information was unreasonable, malafide and without reasonable cause.

 

Carlos Ferreira and Mahesh Sonak, representing the Raj Bhavan office had argued that the Governor of Goa was not a “Public Authority”.

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karira

As reported by UNI in newkerala.com on 01 April 2011:

http://www.newkerala.com/news/world/fullnews-180945.html

 

Caveat filed in High Court against Goa Governor in Right to Information case

 

Panaji, Apr 1: A city-based social activist today filed a caveat in the Bombay High Court at Goa against Governor S S Sidhu in an RTI case.

 

The caveat has been filed by Advocate Aires Rodrigues anticipating that the Governor may move the High Court against the order of the Goa State Information Commission directing Raj Bhavan to furnish the information sought under the Right to Information Act.

 

Adv Rodrigues in his caveat has prayed that no order be passed without notice to him on any petition that may be filed before the High Court by the Governor or any Raj Bhavan official.

 

The State Chief Information Commissioner, Motilal Kenny, in an order yesterday, had ruled that the Goa Governor was a 'Public Authority' and hence his office came under the ambit of the RTI Act.

 

Mr Kenny had directed the Public Information Officer at Raj Bhavan to furnish within 30 days the information sought by Adv Rodrigues under the RTI Act.

 

In his complaint, Adv Rodrigues contested the stand taken by the Raj Bhavan that the Governor is not a public authority and does not come under the purview of the RTI Act.

 

Under the RTI Act, the activist has sought from the Raj Bhavan details of action taken on the complaints made by him to the Governor against state Advocate General Subodh Kantak. Adv Rodrigues had also sought copies of notings and correspondence pertaining to the processing of his complaints against the Advocate General.

 

Adv Rodrigues in his petition before the State Information Commission stated that the office of the Governor is a constitutional post and a 'Public Authority', and hence under the ambit of the RTI Act.

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shivsharma

It is quite surprising to see the stand taken by Goa Governor's office that it is outside the purview of the RTI Act. The Governor's office has challanged the order of the SIC Goa in Mumbai high court at Goa.

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karira
It is quite surprising to see the stand taken by Goa Governor's office that it is outside the purview of the RTI Act. The Governor's office has challanged the order of the SIC Goa in Mumbai high court at Goa.

 

Your post has been merged with another existing thread on the same topic/subject.

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karira

As reported by UNI in newkerala.com on 26 Aril 2011:

http://www.newkerala.com/news/world/fullnews-196829.html

 

High Court bench declines to hear petition

 

Panaji, Apr 25 : A Division bench of the Bombay High Court at Goa, comprising Justices S C Dharmadhikari and F M Reis, declined to hear the petition filed by Goa's Raj Bhavan against the Right to Information Act and directed the matter be heard by a Single judge.

 

The matter will now be heard on April 28 by a Single judge of the Bombay High Court.

 

The Goa Raj Bhavan was represented by Advocate Mahesh Sonak and not the State Advocate General Mr Subodh Kantak.

 

The Goa Raj Bhavan’s petition had been filed before a Division Bench though such petitions, according to the Bombay High Court rules, have to be heard by a Single Judge.

 

The High Court registry had in fact raised an objection to this effect but the Goa Raj Bhavan had insisted that the matter be placed before a Division Bench.

 

The petition, filed by Goa Governor Dr. S.S.Sidhu’s Special Secretary Dr N Radhakrishnan, challenges the March 31 order of the Goa State Information Commission which had directed the Raj Bhavan to furnish Advocate Aires Rodrigues by April 30 the information sought by him under the Right to Information Act.

 

The State Chief Information Commissioner Mr Motilal Keny, in his order, had ruled that the Goa Governor was a Public Authority and did come within the ambit of the Right to Information Act.

 

Rodrigues’s complaint against Goa Governor Dr Sidhu follows the stand taken by the Goa Raj Bhavan that the Governor was not a public authority and did not come within the purview of the RTI Act.

 

Rodrigues had sought from Goa Raj Bhavan under the RTI Act details of action taken on the complaints made by him to the Governor of Goa against Advocate General Subodh Kantak.

 

Rodrigues had also sought copies of noting sheets and correspondence pertaining to the processing of his complaints against the Advocate General of Goa.

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karira

As reported in navhindtimes.in on 29 April 2011:

http://www.navhindtimes.in/goa-news/hc-adjourns-raj-bhavan-hearing-rti-issue-may-2

 

HC adjourns Raj Bhavan hearing on RTI issue to May 2

 

The division bench of the High Court of Bombay at Goa, comprising Mr Justice S C Dharmadhikari and Mr Justice F M Reis.

 

PANAJI: The division bench of the High Court of Bombay at Goa, comprising Mr Justice S C Dharmadhikari and Mr Justice F M Reis, on Thursday, adjourned the petition filed by Goa’s Raj Bhavan to May 2.

 

The petition filed by the Governor, Dr S S Sidhu’s special secretary, Dr N Radhakrishnan challenged the March 31 order of the Goa State Information Commission, which had directed the Raj Bhavan to furnish advocate Aires Rodrigues the information sought by him under the Right to Information Act by April 30.

 

The State Chief Information Commissioner, Mr Motilal Keny, in his order, had ruled that the Governor was a ‘public authority’ and does come within the ambit of the Right to Information Act.

 

Advocate Rodrigues’ complaint against the Governor, Dr Sidhu, follows the stand taken by the Raj Bhavan that the Governor was not a public authority and did not come within the purview of the RTI Act.

 

Advocate Rodrigues had sought from Goa Raj Bhavan under the RTI Act, details of action taken on the complaints made by him to the Governor against Advocate General of Goa, Mr Subodh Kantak. The advocate had also sought copies of noting sheets and correspondence pertaining to the processing of his complaints against the Advocate General.

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karira

As reported by UNI in newkerala.com on 01 May 2011:

http://www.newkerala.com/news/world/fullnews-199958.html

 

High Court to hear Governor's plea against RTI Tomorrow

 

Panaji, May 1 : A Division bench of the Bombay High Court at Goa, comprising Justices S C Dharmadhikari and F M Reis, will hear the petition filed by Goa's Raj Bhavan against the Right to Information Act tomorrow.

 

The petition, filed by Governor Dr S S Sidhu’s Special Secretary Dr N Radhakrishnan challenges the March 31 order of the Goa State Information Commission, which had directed the Raj Bhavan to furnish Advocate Aires Rodrigues within 30 days information sought by him under the Right to Information Act.

 

The State Chief Information Commissioner Mr Motilal Keny, in his order, had ruled that the Governor was a 'Public Authority' and does come within the ambit of the Right to Information Act.

 

Advocate Rodrigues’s complaint against Dr Sidhu follows the stand taken by the Raj Bhavan that the Governor was not a public authority and did not come within the purview of the RTI Act.

 

Advocate Rodrigues had sought from Raj Bhavan under the RTI Act details of action taken on the complaints made by him to the Governor of Goa against Advocate General of Goa Subodh Kantak.

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DineshK

As reported in newkerala.com on May 2, 2011

http://www.newkerala.com/news/world/fullnews-200979.html

 

Hearing on Gov plea against RTI adjourned to June 6

 

Panaji, May 2 : A Division bench of the Bombay High Court at Goa adjourned to June 6, hearing on a petition filed by the state's Raj Bhavan against the Right to Information Act.

 

 

When the matter came up for hearing before the bench, comprising Justice S C Dharmadhikari and F M Reis, Advocate Mahesh Sonak appearing on behalf of Goa Raj Bhavan, told the court that he was not ready and prepared with all the arguments to the objections raised by Raj Bhavan in its petition.

 

The High Court directed that all the issues would have to be addressed and argued on June 6 and that the petition would be decided on that day at the admission stage itself.

 

Adovate Aires Rodrigues submitted to the Court that there was urgency in hearing the petition as the very important Right to Information Act, which was enacted for transparency and accountability, was sought to be violated by the constitutional head of the State.

 

He told the court that it was an irony that in Goa the politicians over the years have been circumventing the Anti-Defection law while the Goa Governor was trying to find loopholes to dodge the Right to Information Act.

 

The petition filed by Goa Governor S S Sidhu’s Special Secretary N Radhakrishnan, before the High Court, challenges the March 31 order of the Goa State Information Commission, which had directed the Raj Bhavan to furnish Mr Rodrigues within 30 days the information sought by him under the Right to Information Act.

 

State Chief Information Commissioner Motilal Keny, in his order, had ruled that the Governor was a 'Public Authority' and does come within the ambit of the Right to Information Act.

 

Mr Rodrigues had sought from Goa Raj Bhavan, under the RTI Act, details of action taken on the complaints made by him to the Governor against Advocate General of Goa Subodh Kantak.

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karira

As reported by PTI in news.oneindia.in on 05 June 2011:

http://news.oneindia.in/2011/06/05/bombayhc-at-goa-to-hear-petition-by-goa-governor-onrti-aid0126.html

 

Bombay HC at Goa to hear petition by Goa Governor on RTI

 

Panaji, June 5: The Bombay High Court at Goa will hear a petition filed by the Governor of Goa S S Sidhu tomorrow, in connection with the Right to Information Act.

 

Governor's special secretary N Radhakrishnan filed a petition in the High Court, challenging the order of Goa State Information Commission (SIC), which had directed Raj Bhavan to furnish details of the information sought by an activist Aires Rodrigues under RTI.

 

Rodrigues had sought details of action taken by the Governor on his complaint against Advocate General of Goa Subodh Kantak.

 

The State Chief Information Commissioner Motilal Keny, in his order dated March 31, had ruled that since Goa Governor was a public authority he did come within the ambit of the RTI.

 

Rodrigues had moved to the SIC following Raj Bhavan's refusal to furnish certain details sought under RTI.

 

Radhakrishnan had said that Governor�s office did not come within the purview of the RTI.

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karira

As reported in timesofindia.indiatimes.com on 07 June 2011:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/goa/HC-adjourns-guv-office-plea-in-RTI-matter/articleshow/8754052.cms

 

HC adjourns guv office plea in RTI matter

 

PANAJI: The high court of Bombay at Goa has adjourned the hearing of a petition filed by the governor of Goa S S Sidhu's office in connection with the applicability of the Right to Information (RTI) Act to it to next Wednesday.

 

Justice S A Bobde and Justice F M Reis on Monday adjourned the hearing after advocate general Subodh Kantak informed the court that there are three cases pending in the high court since 2008 on the issue of whether the governor's office comes within the purview of RTI Act and suggested that all the matters be taken up together.

 

The governor's special secretary, N Radhakrishnan, approached the high court challenging the order of Goa State Information Commission (SIC), which had directed Raj Bhavan to furnish details of the information sought by an activist, Aires Rodrigues, under RTI. Rodrigues had sought details of action taken by the governor on his complaint against advocate general of Goa Subodh Kantak.

 

The state chief information commissioner Motilal Keny, in his order dated March 31, had ruled that since Goa governor's office was a public authority he did come within the ambit of the RTI. Rodrigues had moved the SIC following Raj Bhavan's refusal to furnish certain details sought under RTI.

 

Radhakrishnan had stated that the governor's office did not come within the purview of the RTI Act.

 

odrigues told the court that the governor's office continues to violate the RTI Act as currently the Raj Bhavan denies information under RTI to applicants with a standard reply that the matter is pending before the high court. The court then asked Radhakrishnan's counsel to accordingly advise the Public Information officer (PIO) at the Goa Raj Bhavan on the matter.

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karira

As reported by IANS in newkerala.com on 07 June 2011:

http://www.newkerala.com/news/2011/worldnews-1484.html

 

Court asks Goa governor not to stall RTI queries

 

Panaji, June 6: The Bombay High Court Monday asked the Goa governor's office not to deny information sought under the Right to Information (RTI) on the pretext that the matter was sub judice.

 

A division bench of the court in Panaji comprising Justice S.A. Bobde and Justice F.M. Reis told a Raj Bhavan counsel to instruct the public information officer (PIO) in Goa Governor S.S. Sidhu's office not to deny information.

 

 

It was hearing a petition filed by Sidhu's special secretary N. Radhakrishnan challenging a March 31 order of the State Information Commission that had directed the Raj Bhavan to furnish information sought by petitioner Aires Rodrigues under the RTI Act.

 

The high court also directed that the case would be heard June 15, along with yet another petition filed by leader of opposition Manohar Parrikar, who was denied information under the RTI Act by the Goa governor's office in 2008.

 

Under the RTI Act, Rodrigues had last year sought details of action taken on the complaints made by him to the governor against Advocate General Subodh Kantak. Rodrigues had also sought copies of noting sheets and correspondence pertaining to the processing of his complaints against the advocate general of Goa.

 

After the Goa governor's office refused to part with information claiming it did not come under the purview of the RTI Act, the petitioner had appealed to the state Chief Information Commissioner Motilal Keny, who had subsequently ruled that the Goa governor was a "public authority" and does come within the ambit of the Right to Information Act.

 

Sidhu's office had then appealed against Keny's order in the high court.

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karira

As reported by UNI in indlawnews.com on 15 June 2011:

http://www.indlawnews.com/Newsdisplay.aspx?d16dae3b-f7f2-46fc-99e1-58afd7541b90

 

Solicitor General Of India to defend Goa Governor: RTI case

 

A Division bench of the Bombay High Court at Goa, comprising Justice S A Bobde and Justice F M Reis, today adjourned hearing to July 6 on the petition filed by Goa’s Raj Bhavan against the Right to Information Act.

 

When the matter came up for hearing, Advocate General Subodh Kantak sought that the matter be adjourned as the Solicitor General of India Mr Gopal Subramaniam would be arguing the matter on behalf of the Governor of Goa.

 

The court made it clear that the matter would be heard on July 6 regardless of whether Mr Subramaniam was able to come or not.

 

Advocate Aires Rodrigues submitted to the Court that the matter was urgent as Goa Governor Dr S.S Sidhu was the only Governor not complying with the provisions of the Right to Information Act.

 

Rodrigues told the Court that the information sought by him from Raj Bhavan was required by him in the defamation case filed by Advocate General Subodh Kantak against him.

 

The petition filed by Dr Sidhu’s Special Secretary Dr N Radhakrishnan challenges the March 31 order of the Goa State Information Commission, which had directed the Raj Bhavan to furnish Rodrigues information sought by him under the Right to Information Act.

 

The State Chief Information Commissioner Mr Motilal Keny, in his order, had ruled that the Goa Governor was a 'Public Authority' and des come within the ambit of the Right to Information Act.

 

Rodrigues’s complaint against Dr Sidhu follows the stand taken by the Goa Raj Bhavan that the Governor was not a public authority and did not come within the purview of the RTI Act.

 

He had sought from Raj Bhavan under the RTI Act details of action taken on the complaints made by him to the Governor against Kantak.

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Atul Patankar

Why are all the big guns getting involved in this? Is it a test case for protecting all Raj Bhavans and Rashtrapati Bhavan from RTI?

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karira

As reported by UNI in newkerala.com on 13 July 2011:

http://www.newkerala.com/news/2011/worldnews-27259.html

 

Goa governor'a plea against RTI adjourned till tomorrow

 

Panaji, Jul 13 : The Bombay High Court at Panaji today adjourned till tomorrow, the hearing on a petition filed by the state Raj Bhavan against the State information commission's order which had directed it to furnish the information sought by a city-based social activist and lawyer Aires Rodrigues whether the Governor was a public authority and came under the purview of the Right to Information (RTI) Act.

 

Advocate Rodrigues had sought from Goa Raj Bhavan under the RTI Act details of action taken on his complaints by the Governor Dr S S Sidhu against the state Advocate General Subodh Kantak. He had also sought copies of noting sheets and correspondence pertaining to the processing of his complaints against the Advocate General.

 

Adv Rodrigues filed complaint against the Goa Governor following a stand taken by the Raj Bhavan that the Governor was not a public authority and did not come under the purview of the RTI Act.

 

When the matter came up for hearing, Advocate General Subodh Kantak submitted before a division bench of Justices S A Bobde and Justice F M Reis that he was not ready to argue the matter today and sought time till tomorrow.

 

Adv Rodrigues drew the attention of the court that Advocate General had at the last two hearings misled the court that the Solicitor General of India, Gopal Subramaniam, was going to appear in the matter.

 

Drawing the attention of the court that the government notification appointing Solicitor General of India Mr Subramaniam was to solely appear on behalf of the Governor of Goa, Adv Rodrigues pointed out to the court that the Governor was not a party to the petition and that it was the Public Information Officer at the Goa Raj Bhavan that had filed the petition against the RTI Act.

 

Special secretary to the Governor, Dr N Radhakrishnan, has challenged the March 31 order of the Goa state information commission, which had directed the Raj Bhavan to furnish Adv Rodrigues the information sought by him under the Right to Information Act.

 

The Goa Raj Bhavan has in its petition contended that the Governor, not being a 'Public Authority', does not come under the purview of the RTI Act.

 

The Raj Bhavan has also contended that the Goa State Information Commission has not been properly constituted and that the State Chief Information Commissioner could not have heard matters in the absence of another Information Commissioner.

 

The State chief information commissioner, Motilal Keny, in his order had ruled that the Goa governor was a 'Public Authority' and does come under the ambit of the RTI Act.

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karira

The Raj Bhavan has also contended that the Goa State Information Commission has not been properly constituted and that the State Chief Information Commissioner could not have heard matters in the absence of another Information Commissioner.

 

This contention is like a self goal !

 

It is the Goa Governor who has appointed the CIC/ICs.

The Government issues a notification for the "constitution" of the commission on behalf of the Governor.

 

Does that mean the Governor is saying that he himself is a party to a unlawful constitution ?

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karira

As reported by UNI in newkerala.com on 17 August 2011:

http://www.newkerala.com/news/2011/worldnews-49379.html

 

Appointing PIO was a mistake, Goa Raj Bhavan tells High Court

 

Panaji, Aug 16 : Additional Solicitor General Vivek Tankha today submitted before the Bombay High Court at Goa that appointing a Public Information Officer (PIO) at Raj Bhavan under the Right to Information (RTI) Act was a mistake.

 

Arguing the petition filed by Goa Raj Bhavan against the RTI before a division bench of Justices D G Karnik and F M Reis, Mr Tankha submitted that the President of India, Governor, Chief Justice and the Speaker were not a Public Authority and did not come under the purview of the RTI Act.

 

After Mr Tankha concluded his arguments, which lasted over four hours, Advocate Aires Rodrigues started his submissions which will continue tomorrow morning.

 

Senior Counsel Atamaram Nadkarni, appearing for senior BJP leader Manohar Parrikar in another RTI case, involving Raj Bhavan, which is also being heard, will also make his submissions.

 

When the court asked Adv Rodrigues on the nature of information sought by him from Raj Bhavan, Adv Rodrigues told the court that he had complained to the Governor against Advocate General Subodh Kantak for his excessive billing.

 

Special secretary to Goa Governor, Dr N Radhakrishnan, in his petition before the High Court, challenged the March 31 order of the State Information Commission which had directed the state Raj Bhavan to furnish Adv Rodrigues the information sought by him under the RTI Act.

 

The Raj Bhavan in its petition contended that as the Governor is not a 'Public Authority', he does not come under the purview of the RTI Act.

 

The Raj Bhavan also contended that the State Information Commission has not been properly constituted and that the State Chief Information Commissioner could not have heard the matter in the absence of another Information Commissioner.

 

However, the State Chief Information Commissioner Motilal Keny, in his order, had ruled that the Goa Governor was a 'Public Authority' and does come under the ambit of the RTI Act.

 

Under the RTI Act, Adv Rodrigues had sought details from Raj Bhavan about the action taken by the Governor on his complaints against Advocate General Kantak. He had also sought copies of noting sheets and correspondence pertaining to the processing of his complaints against the Advocate General.

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karira

As reported by UNI in indlawnews.com on 17 August 2011:

http://www.indlawnews.com/Newsdisplay.aspx?c60deb5f-8a1f-45e2-8286-1406043601b5

 

Bombay HC reserves judgement on Goa Governor's plea in RTI case

 

17.8.2011 (UNI) The Bombay High Court at Goa today reserved its judgement on the petition filed by state Raj Bhavan in a case of Right to Information (RTI) Act.

 

Continuing his arguments before a division bench of Justice D G Karnik and Justice F M Reis, Advocate Aires Rodrigues argued that the Governor was a public authority and was the only Governor in the country not complying with the RTI Act.

 

Stating that the RTI Act was enacted to ensure transparency and accountability, Adv Rodrigues drew the attention of the court that the Raj Bhavan was not complying with the RTI Act for the past three years.

 

Special secretary to the Goa Governor Dr N Radhakrishnan in his petition before the High Court has challenged the March 31 order of the State Information Commission (SIC), which had directed the Raj Bhavan to furnish Adv Rodrigues the information sought by him under the RTI Act.

 

The Raj Bhavan has in its petition contended that the Governor is not a public authority and hence does not come under the purview of the RTI Act.

 

The Raj Bhavan has also contended that the SIC has not been properly constituted and that the State Chief Information Commissioner could not have heard the matter in the absence of another Information Commissioner.

 

State Chief Information Commissioner Motilal Keny in his order had ruled that the Goa Governor was a public authority and does come under the ambit of the RTI Act.

 

Adv Rodrigues had sought from Goa Raj Bhavan under the RTI Act details of the action taken by the Governor on his complaints against the Advocate General Subodh Kantak. Adv Rodrigues had also sought copies of noting sheets and correspondence pertaining to the processing of his complaints against the Advocate General.

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karira

As reported by PTI in ibnlive.in.com on 15 Oct 2011:

http://ibnlive.in.com/generalnewsfeed/news/goa-governor-cant-be-outside-rtis-ambit-aruna-roy/863026.html

 

Goa Governor can't be outside RTI's ambit: Aruna Roy

 

Panaji, Oct 15 (PTI) Social activist and renowned RTI activist Aruna Roy today said that Goa Governor's office should be under the purview of Right to Information Act, as even the office of the President does. "When Maharashtra Governor comes under RTI, how can Goa Governor be an exception?" she said, talking to reporters here. "The situation is obviously wrong," she said, adding that "Even the President of India is covered by the Act." In response to a submission by RTI activist Aires Rodrigues, Goa Governor's office had said that the Act did not apply to it. The state Information Commissioner had said that the RTI covers Governor too. But Goa Raj Bhavan challenged this ruling in the High Court, where the case is pending. Roy's colleague at `National Campaign for People's Right to Information (NCPRI)', Nikhil Dey, said the people should step up the political campaign to bring Raj Bhavan in Goa under the RTI.

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      By sidmis
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