Monthly Archives: August 2013

Larger Public interest does not mean that which is interesting as gratifying curiosity or love of information or amusement

Larger Public Interest

Larger Public Interest

A mere allegation of evasion by Smt Sonia Gandhi cannot be construed to fall under larger public interest of RTI Act 2005. Public interest does not mean that which is interesting as gratifying curiosity or love of information or amusement; but that in which a class of the community have a pecuniary interest, or some interest by which their rights or liabilities are affected.

Further the commission stated that “whenever the querist applicant wishes to seek information, the disclosure of which can be made only upon existence of certain special circumstances, for example- the existence of larger public interest, the querist should in the application (moved under Section 6 of the Act) disclose/ plead the special circumstance, so that the PIO concerned can apply his mind to it, and, in case he decides to issue notice to the concerned third party under Section 11 of the Act, the third party is able to effectively deal with the same. Only then the PIO/appellate authority/CIC would be able to come to an informed decision whether, or not, the special circumstances exist in a given case.” Read more ›

Tax Evaders- Feed back on action taken by Authorities would motivate the information givers


Tax Evaders

Information givers on tax evaders are generally keen to know whether the information provided by them has been of some value to the authorities or not. Feed back in this regard would motivate the information givers to provide further informations to the authorities and thereby enable them to curb tax evasion and enhance the state revenues. Viewed thus, despite the office of DG IT (Investigations) being an exempted organization, it may not always be the best policy to deny some kind of feed back to the information givers. The CIC ruled that in case of information about tax evaders once the investigation is completed, the CPIO should inform the appellant as to whether the contents of the TEP were found to be true or false. Full details of investigation, however, need not be disclosed.

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Vigilance proceedings against a third party

vigilance proceedings against a third partyvigilance proceedings against a third partyIf public interest so demands, information, even in such a situation, would have to be disclosed, though after taking into account the rights of the individual concerned to whom the information pertains.  The CIC ruled that the information should be revealed and PIO cannot take exemption that the information is a personal information in respect and hence cannot be provided as per Section 8(1)(j) of the RTI Act.

Vide RTI dt 20.9.12, appellant had sought information on 5 points and inspection of the relevant records relating to departmental action against a person and his exoneration by CAT.

CPIO vide letter dt 23.10.12, informed the appellant that information sought is personal information in respect of Shri Shivaji Ahuja and hence cannot be provided as per Section 8(1)(j) of the RTI Act. AA vide order dt 3.12.12, observed that the information has been rightly denied u/s 8(1)(j) of the RTI Act and disposed of the appeal.  Read more ›