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- Don't pay 500/- for answer sheet now- Supreme Court says if Answer sheet is asked under RTI, RTI Fees will be governed
Don't pay 500/- for answer sheet now- Supreme Court says if Answer sheet is asked under RTI, RTI Fees will be governedBy momita
If a candidate seeks information under the provisions of the Right to Information Act, then payment has to be sought under the RTI Rules.
The question before the Supreme Court was which Guidelines/Rules will govern the prescription of fee for copies of answer sheets and their inspection.
The Court held that while the ICSI is governed by the Companies Secretaries Act, 1980 and the Examination Committee formed under the statute prescribes a certain fee, the RTI Rules also lay down a fee structure for procurement of answer sheets. The Court held,
“In our opinion, the existence of these two avenues is not mutually exclusive and it is up to the candidate to choose either of the routes. Thus, if a candidate seeks information under the provisions of the Right to Information, then payment has to be sought under the Rules therein, however, if the information is sought under the Guidelines of the appellant, then the appellant is at liberty to charge the candidates as per its guidelines.”
The decision was rendered by a Bench of Justices NV Ramana and S Abdul Nazeer, which made it clear that if there are other avenues to procure answer sheets, the applicant can choose which one to route her request through.
The RTI Rules entitle a student to seek inspection and certified copies of their answer scripts. When this right is exercised, Rule 4 will govern the levy of the required charges. This Rule stipulates a fee of Rs. 2 for each page of the answer script. For inspection, no fee is prescribed for the first hour. For every subsequent hour of inspection, the fee is Rs. 5 per hour.
The order came in an appeal filed by the Institute of Companies Secretaries of India (ICSI) against a decision of a Division Bench of the Delhi High Court.
The respondent, Advocate Paras Jain, had sought from ICSI certified copies of answer sheets and their inspection under RTI. He was charged a fee for the same as per Guideline No. 3 notified by the Statutory Council of the ICSI. As per the ICSI Guidelines, the fee for the supply of certified copies was Rs. 500 per answer sheet, and the charge for inspection was Rs. 450 per answer book.
Download the decision here.15222_2014_Order_11-Apr-2019.pdf
RTI News-11 years of struggle to get the names of all the judges in Gujarat- finally Court makes its own officer supply info under RTIBy momita
Eleven years after a lawyer sought details under the Right to Information Act from the Gujarat high court, the HC directed its public information officer (PIO) to furnish the details to the applicant.
According to the commission's advocate, Shivang Shukla, an advocate, Kamlesh Bhavsar, had in 2007 sought information regarding appointment of judges to the Gujarat judiciary since 1990. The PIO supplied information regarding corruption charges against judicial officers and about their convictions within the time limit.
However, the PIO refused to supply information on Bhavsar's request to furnish the names of all the judges - from the rank of judicial magistrate first class in the lower courts to the justices of the high court - appointed between 1990 and 2007. The PIO told the lawyer that he has asked for the information from the branches concernedand collating the details would take more time. He said he would supply information about the appointments as and when he got the details.
On the PIO's refusal to part with the information at the same time, citing the delay in collating the details, Bhavsar filed an appeal before the state information commission, seeking a reply from the HC PIO about the applicant's grievance. In reply to commission's query, the HC's PIO explained his position and sent the details that had been collated to the commission, for it to supply to the lawyer. The PIO sent the information to the commission and requested it to supply the details to advocate Bhavsar, if it thought it fit.
The commission ordered the HC PIO to supply the information to the lawyer. This did not go down well with the HC authorities and the registry challenged the commission's order on the judicial side in 2011. The HC last week dismissed its own petition.
While directing the PIO to supply the information to the lawyer under RTE laws, Justice A J Desai dismissed the petition filed by the high court itself, in which it had challenged the directions issued to the HC by the Gujarat Information Commission, for furnishing the required information to the lawyer.
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