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Anil uses RTI to seek info on Mukesh's deal

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Anil uses RTI to seek info on Mukesh's deal


A 7.5-hectare plot at Bandra-Kurla Complex has become the new battleground for the Ambani brothers. After losing the bid to Mukesh Ambani's Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) for the said plot, Anil Ambani's Reliance Energy Limited (REL) has sought clarification under Right to Information Act on whether Floor Space Index (FSI) was raised from 1.53 to 4 for this land to benefit Mukesh.


At the same time, Anil's Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group has also filed a case in the Bombay High Court saying norms of bidding were violated. REL claims that the additional FSI gives Mukesh an extra 1,85,000 sq mt of land worth an estimated Rs 7,700 crore. The story goes back to December 2005, when the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) invited bids to develop, operate and maintain a convention and exhibition centre in BKC.


Times of India, Ahmedabad



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What will happen when RTI is applicable for the Private Limited Companies??

We may see some more fire works!!

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In a very strange decision related to the First Appeal in this case, the FAA ordered a "stay" on his own order ! First he ordered disclosure of the documents requested without the enclosures submitted by RIL for the bid. Then he "stayed" his own order for a period of 90 days.

Is that allowed under the RTI Act ?


Furthermore, one Mr S.N. Tandon of RIL makes Second Appeal before the SIC to grant a "stay" to the order of the FAA for disclosure.


My question: How did Mr Tandon of RIL come into the picture ?

How did he directly file Second Appeal before the SIC ?

Is he or RIL considered as a Third Party ? (Not very clear from the SIC order).


The order is as below:


Before the State Information Commission, Maharashtra – Appeal under Section 19(3) of RTI Act, 2005.

Appeal No.2007/ /02

Request for stay

Shri Shalin N. Tandon, Reliance

Industries Ltd.,Maker Chambers IV, 3rd floor,

222, Nariman Point, Post Box 11717,

Mumbai 400 021. .. Appellant


1st Appellate Authority &

Chief, Town Planning and Country

Planning Division, MMRDA, Bandra

Kurla Complex, Mumbai 400 051. .. Respondent


Shri Shalin Tandon of RIL, Mumbai has filed 5 appeals u/s 19(3) under RTI Act, 2005 with this Commission on 22.11.2007 against the order of the 1st Appellate Officer of MMRDA who has given the similar order in all the 5 cases with respect to 1st appeal filed with him u/s 19(1) of RTI Act, 2005. The following Applicants had sought the information u/s 6 of RTI Act, pertaining to allotment of plots in Bandra Kurla Complex in general and more specifically certain information in detail including FSI increase pertaining to the plot no.C-64 allotted for Convention Centre:

Sr. No.

Name of applicant

No. of applications

Order no. in first appeal u/s 19(1)


Dr. Kirit Somaiya

2 applications




Dr.Jitesh Alva

1 application



Mr. Tulsi Dadlani

1 application



Mr.Rasiklal S.Mardia

1 application


In the Appellate Order dated 24th August, 2007 u/s 19(1) of the Act the Appellate Officer has directed that a copy of the item note presented for Authority’s consideration and approval to the proposal of allotment of plot C-64 for the proposed development of Convention and Exhibition Centre and Commercial Complex to the highest bidder (RIL) and copy of tender documents only without its enclosures submitted by RIL in the bidding process should be made available to the Appellants. However, the 1st Appellate Officer has ordered stay on execution of his own order for a period of 90 days that is the time specified under the Act for filing 2nd appeal. The Appellant has filed 2nd appeal u/s 19(3) with this Commission on 22.11.2007 within the time period of 90 days and requested this Commission to grant stay order to the execution of the order of the 1st Appellate Officer in all the 5 cases.

The reasoning given for giving stay by the Appellate Officer by the Appellants are as follows:

“(B) The Appellate Authority appointed u/s 19(1) of the Act failed to consider that the information sought by the Applicant are exempted u/s 8(1)(d) and (e) of the Act;

© The Appellate Authority while ordering the disclosure of item note failed to consider the fact that the disclosures of the same is likely to cause harm to be competitive position of the Appellant.

(H) The Appellate Authority failed to appreciate that by disclosing the said item note, the applicant and the public at large as well as the competitors and business rivals of the Appellants would be able to ascertain the cost structure of the said Convention and Exhibition Centre. The same would be detrimental to the competitive position of the Appellant as the Appellant’s competitors would be able to ensure that their pricing is done in a manner in which the aforesaid Convention and Exhibition Centre would be rendered unviable. The Appellants would, therefore, not be able to sustain competition and make the said Convention and Exhibition Centre commercially viable.

(I) The Appellate Authority failed to appreciate that there was a likelihood of a large number of convention centres mushrooming all over the country, hence

certain details such as the cost structure was required to be kept confidential. The aforesaid item note, if disclosed, would expose the entire cost structure of the project. The aforesaid costing has been done by considerable expertise acquired by the Appellants by implementing large number of projects. It is submitted that if the aforesaid item note is disclosed the entire project is likely to be jeopardised. A substantial portion of the Appellants share capital is held by nationalised banks and financial institutions so the disclosure of the said item note will be detrimental to the public as well as nationalised banks and financial institutions investing in the Appellant Company.”

The points raised by the Appellant are pertinent and will have to be examined carefully by giving all concerned to present their view point before the Commission. It is, therefore, ordered that a stay to the execution of the order of the 1st Appellate Officer is granted and all these five appeals are posted for hearing on 24th January, 2008 at 11 a.m.

(Dr. S.V.Joshi)

Chief Information Commissioner


SIC has posted the matter for hearing on 24th January 2008.

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