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  1. Recently I have asked some information through RTI from Registrar Cooperative societies Delhi which I have used to file a case but the documents produced by the other party that too which has sign of Registrar Cooperative societies official contradict the information seeked under RTI. I know information by other party has been generated through illegal mean due to wide spread corruption in the Registrar Cooperative societies as I have seen myself the records which were not their but as I didn't have official inspected the records ,I cannot prove that information which was provided through RTI was correct . Please advise me what sort of options do I have unfortunately my case is also in Registrar cooperative societies office.What other leagl options do I have ?Can the officials who provided me the information can be prosecuted now after the time to file the appeal has been elapsed as I came to know about the documents now when I filed the case. Is there any supreme Court Judgment or CIC decision which can go in favour of me.
  2. IMPORTANT Dear all, This is a very significant Judgement of Supreme Court dated 13 September 2010 (today) in WRIT PETITION (CIVIL) NO. 210 of 2012 IN Namit Sharma vs. UOI, concerning RTI Act 2005 and it may change the course of the implementation of the RTI regime in India. This 107-page judgement contains as many paragraphs. It defines Section 20, 21, 22, 23, & 24 and the role of different functionaries under the RTI Act 2005 from PIO to Information Commissioner. I want every body go through it and bring out the salient feature for the benefit of all. Judgement is available as attachment/can be downloaded from here:http://www.rtiindia.org/forum/downloads/court-judgements-rti-issues-1/sc-judgement-appointment-ics-241/ N THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA.pdf
  3. SC asked to provide details of vehicles with tinted glass Reported by Nivedita Khandekar in hindustantimes.com on 11.05.2013 SC asked to provide details of vehicles with tinted glass - Hindustan Times The Supreme Court, which has banned dark films for vehicles in India, has been directed to submit details of its own cars originally fitted with tinted glass or coated with tinted film. The Central Information Commission (CIC) has directed Apex court officials to provide the information, after they refused to divulge details under the Right to Information (RTI) Act, along with details of cars that still having tinted glass and those from which films have been removed. Appellant Jagjit Singh, an RTI activist, said it was the Supreme Court that had banned all vehicles in India from having dark films. “Therefore I was interested in knowing if its own vehicles were following this direction,” he said As reported by HT on December 29, 2012, Singh had asked the Supreme Court authorities several questions which included the number of government vehicles in use by the apex court, its make, average monthly fuel consumption of each vehicle, copies of pollution under check certificates since January, how many vehicles had dark films or tinted glasses and who uses which vehicle. However, Singh was provided only partial information by the Apex court after which he approached the CIC. Satyanand Mishra, the chief information commissioner, said leaving aside specific item/s of information, we do not see any reason why the remaining information should not be disclosed. Mishra, during a hearing last week, however, upheld a submission by the Supreme Court authorities that information such as the number of cars being used by the chief justice of India and other judges need not be brought in public domain. He then directed the Supreme Court officials to provide within 15 days information about the cars in use in the Supreme Court at the time of filing of RTI application, the details of those cars, which had been originally fitted with tinted glasses or in which the glasses had been coated with films, including the cost incurred on such conversions; the list of cars from which the tinted glass had been removed.
  4. ​CVC slams Department of Revenue, CBDT and CBEC for shielding corrupt officials Reported by Aman Sharma in economictimes.indiatimes.com on Jan 3,2013 CVC slams Department of Revenue, CBDT and CBEC for shielding corrupt officials - The Economic Times NEW DELHI: The Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) has slammed the Department of Revenue in theMinistry of Finance and two of its key organs - theCentral Bureau of Direct Taxes (CBDT) and the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) - for shielding its allegedly corrupt senior officials. In response to an RTI application filed by ET, CVC has revealed the minutes of all annual review meetings held by it in 2012 with the Central Vigilance Officers (CVOs) of various government sectors. The minutes of one such meeting held on July 27, 2012, with CVOs of the Revenue and Transport Sector reveal that CVC came down hard on the Department of Revenue, CBDT andCBEC for going slow against corruption. The minutes clearly state that CVC Pradeep Thakur said at the meeting that there is a "perceptible tendency" in the Department of Revenue of "trying to protect particularly senior officers" in the organisation. CVC asked Shashi Shekhar, the additional secretary (revenue) and CVO of Department of Revenue, to make concerted efforts to liquidate the pendency of corruption complaints, saying the commission was concerned over the inordinate delay in implementation of its advice for action. CVC also criticised CBEC at this meeting, saying that certain accused officers in CBEC are made to retire without any action against them for corruption and that action after retirement is "indefinitely delayed" to the advantage of the accused officers. The minutes state that CVC pointed out that investigating officers (IOs) in CBEC had the tendency to hold charges against officers as "not proved" in most of the cases and CVO also generally tend to agree with the findings of IO even in cases of glaring omissions and commissions. "Reports of IOs are not scrutinised by CVO with due objectivity and diligence. CVC stated that IOs, at times, even ignore the board's own guidelines while conducting inquiries and that accountability should be fixed by IOs in fair and just manner even against their own colleagues and no personal relations should interfere in the decision making of IOs," the minutes provided under RTI state. Shielding top officers is a phenomenon in CBDT too, the minutes indicate. "CVC expressed its concern at the inordinate delays being caused by CBDT in finalising regular departmental action cases, implementation of CVC's advice and in grant of sanction for prosecution. CVC stated that such delays indicated reluctance of the administration in taking action against senior officials and such delays, especially in grant of sanction for prosecution, are completely unacceptable. CVC also expressed its displeasure at the arbitrary fashion in which adjudicating officers are passing the orders while deciding cases of higher revenue implications," the minutes say. CVC was similarly anguished about the large number of pendency of action against allegedly corrupt officials in CBDT, saying Supreme Court has recently made it mandatory for prosecution sanction to be granted within three months and officers intentionally delaying the same to be held accountable. As per the CVC annual report for 2011, CBDT and CBEC were still to take action against a total of 474 corrupt officers against whom CVC advised action over six months ago. 334 such cases were pending in CBEC while 144 cases were pending in CBDT. In comparison, CBEC took action only against 69 of its officers last year while CBDT acted against just eight officers.
  5. ​SC gives partial information on vehicles it uses Reported by Nivedita Khandekar in hindustantimes.com on DEc 29, 2012 http://www.hindustantimes.com/India-news/NewDelhi/SC-gives-partial-information-on-vehicles-it-uses/Article1-982154.aspx Even when the Supreme Court has banned the use of black films restricting vision beyond permissible limits for vehicles across India, it has refused to divulge details about the status of its own fleet of cars for PUC certificates and dark films/tinted glasses. In reply to a query under Right to Information (RTI) Act, the Supreme Court registrar supplied incomplete information about its vehicles. Among the several questions that Jagjit Singh, an activist, had asked the SC were the number of government vehicles in use by the apex court, its make, average monthly fuel consumption of each vehicle, copies of pollution under check (PUC) certificates since January, number of vehicles with dark films or tinted glasses and who uses which vehicles. The registrar office did answer that the Supreme Court uses 72 vehicles and gave a break up that 40 vehicles are being used by the chief justice, other judges (31 vehicles) and senior officials (9). It also gave partial information about the average fuel consumption and approximate monthly run of all vehicles. "What about rest of the 32 vehicles? Also, there is no mention whatsoever about the number of vehicles with dark films or company manufactured glass. Instead the reply was: 'The visual light transmission (VLT) of the vehicles is as per the Motor Vehicles rules," Singh said. Further, the registrar office refused to give copies of PUC certificates stating: "Necessary documents sought for by you cannot be provided since it may disclose information which would endanger the life and physical safety in view of the section 8(1)(g) of the RTI Act 2005." Former information commissioner Shailesh Gandhi said: "If section 8(1)(g) is being quoted, it is impossible to imagine how revealing the photocopies of PUC certificate could endanger physical safety of life of any person. I think the PIO wanted to crack a joke." Singh's appeal with the First Appellate Authority resulted in similar evasive replies. He is now awaiting a hearing at the Central Information Commission.
  6. Hi Sir, Do High Courts have any jurisdiction over the Consumer Cases initiated under any section(s) of the Consumer Protection Act -1986(As Amended upto date)? If so, pl. define the prescribed procedural details, and if not why Hon'ble Delhi High Court is exceeding its jurisdiction in the Consumer Matters and the Consumer cases against M/s. Triveni Infrastructure Development Co. Ltd., New Delhi while their jurisdiction (both original and and appellate) exclusively and entirely vests in the Consumer courts (Distt., Forum, State commission and National Commission and finally with the Hon'ble Supreme court. What is the remedy for the hundreds of aggrieved Consumers of the services of the defaulting company who are coerced to take their cases to a Committee Court created by the Hon'ble Delhi High Court, even when they have already been decided by the proper and appropriate Consumer Fora. One such case is Execution case No.504 of 2010 u/s27 of CPA -1986 Sandeep Maheshwari Vs. the Developers still pending before the Hon'ble Distt. Forum No. X, Qutub Institutional Area, New Delhi-110 016 since more than a year?. there could be several such cases as the notorious company has gravely and severely defaulted in providing the necessary services for which they have collected huge sums for their various projects from the hundreds of Consumers. Even vested with the powers of !st Class Magistrate, the Consumer courts for reasons better known to them are shying away from awarding the defaulting company the deterrent punishment and prison term as provided under the Consumer Protection Law.
  7. I want to know that is supreme court order is only for showing answer sheets to students, is there any thing if a student is not satisfying with the evaluation of examiner, I filed a case in high court jaipur to see my answer sheets of b.tech under rajasthan technical university(RTU) kota. after two visits by me and a notice by my lawyer of filing contempt for not obeying order given by high court to show me answer sheets within 2 months. RtU called me and shown answer sheets which correctly indicates that answer sheets are not correctly checked, solutions of 8 marks are simply cut, and given 1 or 2 marks out of 8 in some solutions which are the same in my textbook. there is a difference in marks given inside and outside of sheet in 2 questions. in some questions marks are over marked by 0. simply given 0 out of 8 and 16 in some questions. rtu officials said that we can't object on marking by examiner and supreme court order is also only for showing copies to students, no body can go against marking by examiner. please tell me whether i filed another case in high court for revaluation of sheets is there any provision for it? These peoples are making fun of my hard work of 1 year.
  8. शिक्षा का अधिकार लागू, गरीब बच्चों को देनी होगी 25 फीसदी सीट Source: dainikbhaskar.com | Last Updated 11:22(12/04/12) sc gives green signal to right to education - नई दिल्ली. 6-14 साल की उम्र के हर बच्चे को अनिवार्य और मुफ्त शिक्षा का अधिकार देने वाले कानून (राइट टू एजुकेशन) को सुप्रीम कोर्ट ने आज हरी झंडी दिखा दी। निजी स्कूलों की ओर से दायर याचिका पर सुनवाई के बाद सुप्रीम कोर्ट ने अपना फैसला सुनाया। कोर्ट के आदेश के मुताबिक गुरुवार से ही देश के हर स्*कूल में शिक्षा का अधिकार कानून लागू हो गया है। इस फैसले के बाद देश सभी निजी स्*कूलों में गरीब बच्*चों के लिए 25 फीसदी सीटें आरक्षित करनी होंगी। इस बाध्यता से सिर्फ उन स्कूलों को राहत मिलेगी जो गैर सहायता प्राप्*त अल्*पसंख्*यक संस्थाओं द्वारा चलाए जा रहे हैं। इसी मामले में एक अन्य अहम मुद्दे पर सुप्रीम कोर्ट ने व्यवस्था दी है कि जन्*म प्रमाण पत्र के बिना भी स्कूलों को बच्चों का दाखिला लेना होगा। [h=1]Seats for weaker sections under Right to Education valid: SC[/h] New Delhi, April 12, 2012, (IANS) http://www.deccanherald.com/content/241490/seats-weaker-sections-right-education.html The Supreme Court Thursday upheld the constitutional validity of the Right to Education (RTE) that mandates unaided private schools to earmark 25 percent seats for students from economically and socially weaker sections of society. However, the court made it clear that this reservation would not be applicable to unaided minority institutions. The apex court bench of Chief Justice S.H. Kapadia and Justice Swatanter Kumar upheld the constitutional validity of Section 12 1C of the right to education (RTE) act that provides 25 percent reservation for students from weaker sections of society. However, Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan, in a dissenting judgment, held that the mandate under RTE providing for reservation of seats was not constitutionally valid, thus none of the unaided schools, be it of majority or minority, could be compelled to earmark 25 percent seats in their institutions for weaker sections. The court said the judgment will come into force from Thursday itself, but the admissions already made will not be disturbed.
  9. Dear Members The Hon'ble supreme court in its Judgement on December 12, 2011 clarified that complaint u/s 18(1) and Appeal under 19 are distinct. Further observed s. 19 is more beneficial to access information. So it is better to convert the complaints to second appeal in my opinion by filing an amemdment application and pray for invoking the powers of SIC/CIC u/s 19(8)© to impose penaties and compensation u/s 19(8)(b). click for more : http://www.rtiindia.org/forum/blogs/parsar/2499-second-appeal-covers-compliant-s-19-8-c-s-18-1-redundant.html
  10. As reported in zeenews.com on 16 February 2009: No records of complaints against High Court judges Supreme Court claims holds no records of complaints against High Court judges New Delhi, Feb 16: Does the Supreme Court keep no record of complaints received against High Court judges? Well, this seems to be the case as the apex court has refused to disclose such information to a RTI applicant claiming that such complaints "are not held by or under the control of Supreme Court of India ", an argument upheld by the Central Information Commission. The case pertains to the RTI query of Shruti Singh Chauhan who sought details from the apex court of the "List of all complaints received against judges or staff of different high courts" between April 1, 2003 to March 31, 2007. She had requested the public information officer of the apex court to forward the application to the appropriate authority in case the information was not held by the SC. The apex court in its reply said "...complaints against Judges of the high Court or staff of different High Courts are not held by or under the control of the Supreme Court of India and hence your request cannot be acceded to." Her appeal against the decision also failed to evoke any positive reply as the First Appellate Authority of the SC held "In the absence of anything to show that the authority who was holding such information was within the knowledge of CPIO Supreme Court, I am not inclined to accept the argument that the CPIO ought to have exercised his powers...RTI Act, 2005."
  11. Hello friend i seek your suggestions , I am a student and my problem is that , i gave exam and i got 58% in 4 paper and they gave me 25% in one and they literally failed me , and i am sure that i cannot fail , so i filed a rti in the university asking for my answer sheet and answer why and how they can give me 24 marks and fail me , and the officer said i cannot ask these question and i wont be given answer . though he formally accepted my application stating that you will get nothing from us . now my question is that , since sc approved that students have right to their answer sheet they can have it , but can a student question the examiner how he evaluated the answer sheet and on what basis he failed the student if student answered all the questions and student is damn sure that he wrote correct answer and his past records are also good ? help me friends what should be done .
  12. A news from Hindustan times>>>>>>>>>>>It is citizens' prerogative to decide under which method prescribed by the public authority or the RTI Act, they would like to obtain information. SHAILESH GANDHI Information commissioner : In a surprise move, an information commissioner has overturned the decision of India's first Chief Information Commissioner Wajahat Habibullah, who had accepted the Supreme Court argument that a Right to Information (RTI) application can be rejected if it has not been filed under the rules of the top court. Information Commissioner Shailesh Gandhi, in a detailed order, has concluded that he “respectfully disagrees with the decision of the then Chief Information Commissioner that the Supreme Court may choose to deny information under the RTI Act and ask an applicant to apply under the rules of the top court.“ Gandhi, in his order, has requested the Supreme Court to become a role model in the implementation of the RTI Act. “The Supreme Court should inspire all public authorities to follow its lead in transparency. This would certainly enable better delivery of citizens' fundamental right to information,“ he said in the order. Gurgaon resident RS Misra had last year sought under the RTI certain documents, including official letters, which were a part of the Supreme Court record. He was informed by the Supreme Court that he would be allowed to inspect some of the documents sought by him, in case a proper application under the 1966 rules of the top court was made to its information officer. Not convinced with the reply, Misra filed an appeal through his lawyer Rachna Gupta in the Supreme Court, but it was dismissed. He then approached the Central Information Commission (CIC) with his grouse, where the lawyer representing the Supreme Court cited two orders passed by Habibullah, in which the supremacy of the rules of the top court had been accepted over the RTI Act. Gandhi, however, deciding the appeal in favour of Misra, ruled: “It is the citizens' prerogative to decide under which mechanism i.e. under which method prescribed by the public authority or the RTI Act, they would like to obtain the information.“
  13. As reported at hindustantimes.com on February 20, 2011 The CBI did not file a review petition against the Supreme Court order in the Priyadarshini Mattoo rape and murder case as the officials concerned were convinced that sentence, commutation of death to life imprisonment, awarded to killer Santosh Singh was "proportionate" to the crime. The CBI officials and prosecution were unanimous that Supreme Court has accepted all the arguments raised by them but awarding of sentence was the domain of judges where the prosecution cannot press beyond a point. Santosh, who had brutally raped and murdered Mattoo, alone in her flat, was convicted by Delhi High Court and sentenced to death but it was commuted to life term last year by the Supreme Court. The victim's father Chaman Lal Mattoo had sent a request to file a curative petition before the bench pressing for death sentence for Santosh. The details of file notings show that all the officers who dealt with the case were of the unanimous view that there was no "illegality" in the judgement and matter should be brought to rest. "Prosecution case has been accepted by the honourable Supreme Court in toto... Considering the mitigating circumstances is well within the ambit of the apex court and the investigating and prosecuting agency have no ground whatsoever to question the authority in grant of a sentence duly prescribed by the statute. "The sentence awarded by the Supreme Court is still satisfying as accused has been awarded Life imprisonment which appears proportionate to the crime," one of the officials noted on the case file. The files, inspected under the RTI Act, show that officials were of the view Supreme Court being the "highest court of the land" there is no need of filing any curative petition etc." against the said judgement. Santosh, son of a former IPS officer, was charged with rape and murder of 25-year-old Mattoo, a law student at Delhi University. He was acquitted by the sessions court but the high court was convinced by arguments of the CBI and sentenced him to death. The CBI also felt that the Supreme Court had upheld all the points raised by it which proved the crime of Singh but when it came to sentence him, the bench of justices H S Bedi and C K Prasad said six mitigating circumstances were in favour of Singh -- age at the time of crime, marriage and being father of a girl child, death of his father, prospect of dismal future for his family and reversal of judgment by high court and commuted sentence to life term, the notings show. The CBI officials also felt that since the Supreme Court was not convinced that the case come under rarest of the rare category, there was no point of pressing for death penalty for the accused.
  14. :(hi my question is related to supreme court of India> if the petition is dismissed due to delay and if advocate is responsible for delay in filing petition for SLP and charging a huge amount and later not giving back the amount. where can I complain against the advocate and what action should I be taking i am a female dealing with injustice I have already complaint to the bar council ,the supreme court of India, chief justice of India and many more authorities and in police station also the day I came to know about his fraud its almost 4months now but have not received any information related to my complaints can u plz guide and tell me what all I can do now I want permission to reappear in the court and I want my huge amount back which I gave it to this advocate of mine he mislead me and harassed me a lot I have the evidence against him what do I do.
  15. Sir, I have submitted a representation to Bangalore City Police Commissioner on 18/07/07 requesting him to initiate action to control the usage of loud speakers in places of religious worship (especially in early mornings) in accordance with orders of Hon'ble Supreme Court of India. It appears that no action has been forthcoming because the loudspeakers continue to blare prayers, sermons, chants etc. The matter was referred to Police Commissioner of Bangalore City by the Office of Chief Minister and Home Minister of Karnataka (I have copies of these letters). To seek the details of the action taken by Police, I need the following information to proceed further : 1. Is the Police under the purview of RTI Act? 2. Is there an application format for applying for info from the police? Where do I get it? 3. Can I avoid going to the Police Commissioner's office and apply online or thru post (RPAD) ? 4. Can I send a Postal Order (Rs.10=00) alongwith the application? Please help me. Bhanu
  16. Police not bound to register FIR: SC Pioneer News Service | New Delhi The Supreme Court in a recent judgment has said that the police was not bound to register a First Information Report if it thinks appropriate to first conduct a preliminary inquiry. Though the intention of the court was to screen out frivolous complaints borne out of vested interests, the recent decision seeks to upturn the law previously laid down by the apex court by which the police had to oblige every complaint. The Bench of Justices SB Sinha and HS Bedi said, "Although the officer in-charge of a police station is legally bound to register an FIR... the same by itself however does not take away the right of the competent officer to make a preliminary inquiry, in a given case, in order to find out as to whether the FIR sought to be lodged had any substance or not." The court was referring to the facts of a case where one Rajinder Singh Katoch had approached the Supreme Court challenging the order by the High Court of Punjab and Haryana refusing to direct the police to lodge an FIR. Katoch had complained to the Chandigarh Police seeking registration of a criminal case against his brother for wrongfully restraining his entry into a joint property left by their father. He stayed in the house in 2001 but on his return after a brief visit to Delhi a year later he was refused entry and to take possession of his belongings. The Bench held, "the SP himself has, pursuant to the directions issued by the HC, investigated into the matter and visited the spot in order to find out the truth ... It was found that the complaint was false and had been filed with an ulterior motive." The Pioneer > Home
  17. RTI Act does not apply to my office: Chief Justice of India As reported in Times of India 20 Apr 2008, 0034 hrs NEW DELHI: Chief Justice of India K G Balakrishnan on Saturday refused to comment on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s categorical statement that "corruption is another challenge we face both in government and the judiciary". The CJI also clearly said that the office of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court should be out of the purview of RTI. "The Chief Justice is not a public servant. He is a constitutional authority. RTI does not cover constitutional authorities," the CJI said. Admitting that the issue of salaries of judges was part of the agenda of two-day conference of chief justices of high courts, he denied that any demand had been made. "When pay structures of others go up, our salary would also increase," the CJI said. Earlier in the day, the PM, while inaugurating the annual conference of chief ministers and chief justices, had talked of corruption in government and judiciary. However, during the interaction with journalists later, the CJI first said that the PM was talking about corruption cases with the CBI. Asked if he agreed or disagreed with the PM, he said, "There is no question of agreement or disagreement." When journalists persisted about how well the in-house mechanism of declaring assets and liabilities is working, the CJI said, "At the time of appointment of judges in the SC they give property statement. In case they purchase any property, information is given in a sealed cover." He also did not reply to a specific query about how the SC or a high court inquires in case where there is a genuine complaint against a sitting judge. Another of PM’s suggestion, mooted by the CJI, that the Centre should invoke Article 247 to set up family courts in all states found favour with law minister H R Bhardwaj. Asked if such a step would not be against the federal principle, Bhardwaj said, "The Family Act is a central act and if a noble cause is suffering, the Centre can intervene. State governments would welcome it." Disagreement between the law minister and CJI came to fore on the issue of appointment of judges in the SC and high courts. Denying that he called the collegium an "extra-constitutional authority", Bhardwaj, however, said the present system is acceptable to him only because of the nine-Bench SC order in the advocates-on-record case. "Every lawyer who argued in favour of the collegium now wants the government to change it. The Constitution clearly states that appointments would be through the aid and advice of the council of ministers. But it was changed by the SC order. Parliament has all the powers to change it but this is not the time," Bhardwaj said. On his part, the CJI said, "I am bound by the SC order." Bhardwaj reiterated that the Judges Inquiry Bill had not been put in cold storage. After incorporating the changes suggested by the standing committee of Parliament the Bill would be passed by the monsoon session, he said. In his speech during the inaugural session, the CJI lamented that despite repeated efforts, allocation of funds for starting of new courts is not very encouraging. "The budget allotment is grossly inadequate to meet the requirements of judiciary...the state should make budgetary provision for starting new courts," he said. The CJI also categorically ruled out evening courts of the Supreme Court.
  18. sidmis

    Uninspiring tenure

    Uninspiring tenure 'The CJI is the visible symbol of the judiciary.' As reported in The Hindu 13 May 2010 The change of guard at the Supreme Court, with Justice S H Kapadia taking over as the chief justice in place of Justice K G Balakrishnan who retired on Tuesday, is an occasion to look at the functioning of the country’s judiciary, especially the higher judiciary. The status and credibility of the judiciary is still high but it has taken a knock in the recent past, through controversies, scandals about the conduct of judges, and the inability or failure of the of the top judicial leadership to address the problems that are dogging the system. The Supreme Court has an illustrious lineage of chief justices who gave new directions to the judiciary, expanded the scope of legal rights, introduced new concepts and practices and worked to reform the system. But unfortunately Justice Balakrishan’s tenure may not be considered so distinguished and impressive, as his helmsmanship was seen to be lacking in dynamism and creative and positive thinking. He rather acquired a negative and obstructionist image. In some of the decisions and actions during his stewardship of the highest court, and in his views about issues and positions on them, he came through as a defender of orthodoxies and technicalities with a sense of cynicism and helplessness aiding inaction. On occasions he seemed to distance himself from issues and problems, suggesting that the solutions lay elsewhere. Even a streak of evasiveness, lack of interest and recourse to generalities could be discerned in some responses. The CJI should not only be earnest, but be seen to be so too. The contentious issue of bringing the office of the CJI under the Right to Information Act and the handling of the charges against the chief justice of the Karnataka high court P D Dinakaran have not brought laurels to the highest court. The CJI is part of a system and cannot be solely blamed for its inadequate responses to problems. But as the leader of the system and its visible symbol, he has the highest responsibility to ensure that convincing and effective solutions are found for them. Many of the problems like mounting case arrears and judicial delays are systemic, for which judges alone cannot find solutions. But many of the issues on which the judiciary has recently come into adverse limelight are of a different order and relate to the conduct of judges. A healthier and more proactive approach to the system with all its limitations might have produced better results. Uninspiring tenure
  19. A few just men who raised the bar as reported by Manoj Mitta, TNN, May 16, 2010 K G Balakrishnan, whose tenure as Chief Justice of India ended last week, was the first Dalit to hold the post. But his time in office was marked by a near-Brahminical resistance to the transparency triggered by the Right to Information Act. High court judges across the country, however, displayed great spunk in standing up to Balakrishnan in a break from the judiciary's notoriously servile culture. The unintended consequence of Balakrishnan's style of leadership was that HC judges had an impact at the national level like never before. This was not just on issues of accountability but also in the way they upheld the letter and spirit of the law in the course of their work. Remember the challenge thrown to Balakrishnan by Justice Shylendra Kumar of the Karnataka HC and Justice K Kannan of the Punjab and Haryana high court when they publicly dissented with his line that disclosure of assets belonging to judges would compromise the independence of the judiciary? The novelty value was enhanced by the medium of their revolt: blogs! The lead taken by Kannan and Kumar, along with Justice K Chandru of the Madras HC, had a salutary effect. It put pressure on their seniors in the Supreme Court to disclose their assets. Even as Balakrishnan accused him of being "publicity-crazy" allegedly for speaking out of turn, Kumar hit back by calling him "a serpent without fangs". This was in the context of the bungled move to elevate P D Dinakaran, chief justice of the Karnataka high court, to the Supreme Court. Kumar evidently felt justified in such irreverence as the stalemate over Dinakaran had paralyzed his high court. Balakrishnan's reluctance to drop Dinakaran's candidature despite serious charges of corruption and the Supreme Court collegium's decision to deny promotion to A P Shah, the Delhi HC chief justice who had made history by decriminalizing homosexuality, exposed the rot in the system of appointments. As if that were not bad enough for Balakrishnan, Justice Ravindra Bhat of the Delhi HC, and then a division bench, comprising Justice Shah and Justice S Muralidhar, dismissed the Supreme Court's appeals against the RTI order passed in the assets case by the Central Information Commission. Another conscience keeper who ended up damaging Balakrishnan's reputation, however inadvertently, was Justice R Reghupati of the Madras HC as he complained in writing about an attempt made by a Union minister to interfere in a case pending before him. Rather than ordering an inquiry, Balakrishnan hushed up the affair on the technicality that Reghupati had not actually spoken to the minister during the mobile call made from his chamber by a lawyer trying to fix the case. Balakrishnan was equally evasive when it came to following up on the categorical recommendation made by an in-house committee of three senior HC judges that Justice Nirmal Yadav of the Punjab and Haryana HC was unfit to remain in office for her alleged complicity in the cash-for-judge scam. This time he took refuge in the technicality that the then attorney general had opined that no corruption case had been made out by CBI against Yadav. Balakrishnan however remained tightlipped on what had stopped him from taking any administrative action against Yadav, including the kind of recommendation for impeachment proceedings he had made to the government against Justice Sowmitra Sen of the Calcutta high court. In another mystifying rollback of accountability, Balakrishnan recommended to the President to bring back the Allahabad HC judges who had been transferred out in the wake of the Ghaziabad provident fund scam. All that is known to have changed though since their transfer is that the main accused in the case, a court employee, died mysteriously in judicial custody. Balakrishnan's tenure was redeemed to an extent by a slew of path-breaking verdicts, not just by Supreme Court judges but also by their HC counterparts. Just before his retirement, he struck a blow for human rights by outlawing the practice of forcing out the "truth" from suspects through narco analysis. Such progressive decisions were a silver lining to the dark cloud of falling standards in judicial probity. A few just men who raised the bar - Special Report - Sunday TOI - Home - The Times of India
  20. In a hearing held on 10 May 2010, the Supreme Court has submitted before the CIC, that the office of the CJI is indeed a PA, as defined in Sec 2(h) of the RTI Act. http://www.rti.india.gov.in/cic_decisions/CIC_WB_A_2009_000279.pdf Shri Kamat also submitted that subsequent to the decision in the present case, it has been agreed by the Supreme Court of India that the Office of Chief Justice of India is indeed a public authority within the meaning of sec. 2(h) of the RTI Act. . . . . DECISION NOTICE It is now established and agreed to by all parties that the office of Chief Justice of India is a Public Authority within the meaning of Sec. 2(h) of the RTI Act, as part of the Supreme Court of India. The order of Appellate Authority, Shri M. P. Bhadran on appeal No. 2 of 2009 dated 17.1.09 is, therefore, set aside. Learned Counsel for the Supreme Court of India has also provided the information sought by appellant Shri Nemi Chand Jain, in the hearing. The appeal is thus allowed. There will be no costs. ======================= Does this have anything to do with the fact that the present CJI is retiring tomorrow ? CIC_WB_A_2009_000279.pdf
  21. Is SC trying to deny applicant info under RTI? AS reported by Sri Manoj Mitta , TNN, Mar 18, 2010 NEW DELHI: For somebody who has made no secret of his hostility to RTI, CJI K G Balakrishnan has outdone himself. For, without getting into the nitty-gritty of RTI clauses, the Supreme Court has come up with a novel excuse for denying information. It has just said that the application had been "placed before" the CJI himself and that he had not ordered any action on it. Responding to Kashmiri political leader Abdul Gani Bhat on February 26, the central public information officer (CPIO) of the apex court, Raj Pal Arora, made no reference to any of the 10 categories of information exempted from disclosure under Section 8 of RTI. Instead, while saying that the application had been placed before Justice Balakrishnan, Arora gave no explanation for deviating from the statutory norm under which the CJI has no decision-making role on whether certain information could be disclosed or not. The official involvement of Justice Balakrishnan in the CPIO's decision makes a mockery of the remedy available to Bhat under RTI to file his first appeal before a superior officer in the Supreme Court registry, M K Gupta. For, Gupta would hardly be in a position to sit in judgment over the inaction of Justice Balakrishnan. Having referred the application to the CJI, the CPIO washed his hands off it saying, "No action having been directed thereon, the same was lodged/filed. Further no information is available." It's as if the invocation of the CJI's name empowers the Supreme Court's CPIO to bypass the general obligation of disclosure put on him by RTI. The apex court's latest attempt to undermine RTI is despite the fact that five of the eight documents sought by Bhat relate to administrative orders passed by the registry declaring the Supreme Court premises as "high security zone" and imposing restrictions on the movements of petitioners-in-person. The other three pieces of information asked for by Bhat relate to the more sensitive information on the proposal to appoint a judge from the Jammu and Kashmir high court, Justice N A Kakru, as chief justice of the Andhra Pradesh high court. The evasive response to Bhat's application came around the time Justice Balakrishnan directed the head of the registry to file an appeal before the Supreme Court against the judgment of the Delhi high court in the judges' assets case. It was in that case that the Supreme Court had on the administrative side originally claimed that CJI did not fall under the ambit of RTI. But in the course of the proceedings before the Delhi HC, the SC conceded that the CJI too was accountable under RTI. Is SC trying to deny applicant info under RTI? - India - The Times of India
  22. Judges’ wealth: Info body seeks opinions As Reported By Nagendar Sharma, Hindustan New Delhi, July 04, 2008 In an attempt to settle the controversy surrounding the implementation of Right to Information Act in the judiciary, the Central Information Commission (CIC) has directed Supreme Court officials and the Department of Personnel and Training to present their views on the matter. The CIC, in separate notices to the court and department officials, has directed them to be present before its full bench hearing on July 11 with their replies on the controversial issue of whether the wealth details of judges should be made public or not. The commission directive follows an appeal filed by a Delhi resident, based on a series of recent reports by Hindustan Times, highlighting the refusal of Supreme Court and High Court judges to make public the details of their wealth under the RTI Act. In his appeal, Subhash Chandra Aggarwal has sought to know whether the Supreme Court implemented its own resolution making it mandatory for Supreme Court and High Court judges to submit their wealth details to respective chief justices regularly. The resolution, passed in a full court meeting attended by 22 judges in May 1997, chaired by then Chief Justice of India, Justice JS Verma, stated: "Every judge of the Supreme Court and High Courts, should within a reasonable timeframe of appointment, provide details to the Chief Justice of all assets in the form of real estate or investment held by him, his/her spouse or anyone dependant on them". However, it is not known whether this resolution, which did not have a legal backing was ever implemented. Asked about the resolution, Justice Verma said, "It was implemented during my tenure and at that time names of even High Court judges were cleared by the collegium only on furnishing the details of assets. I cannot comment on what happened after I demitted office in 1998". The CIC has also issued a notice to the DoPT on a separate appeal filed by Aggarwal, in which he has sought to know whether the Chief Justice of India and High Court Chief Justices were covered under the RTI Act or not. The appeal is based on replied given by the Supreme Court and comments made by CJI KG Balakrishnan in April this year that being a constitutional functionary, his office did not come in the purview of the RTI Act. The CIC decision in the matter would finally settle the controversy surrounding the extent to which the Act could be implemented in the judiciary. Justice Balakrishnan’s statement claiming exemption from the RTI Act, was strongly countered by Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee and the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Law & Justice. Judges? wealth: Info body seeks opinions- Hindustan Times
  23. As reported by IANS in dailypioneer.com on 25 November 2009: The Pioneer > Online Edition : >> CIC asks apex court for information on judges elevation CIC asks apex court for information on judges' elevation The Central Information Commission (CIC) has asked the Supreme Court to reveal information about the elevation of three high court chief justices to the apex court superseding the seniority of three others. The action came on a Right to Information (RTI) application of activist Subhash Chandra Agrawal, who sought to know how were Justice H.L. Dattu, Justice A.K. Ganguly and Justice R.M. Lodha elevated and appointed to the Supreme Court, superseding Justice A.P. Shah, Justice A.K. Patnaik and Justice V.K. Gupta. Supreme Court judges are selected by a collegium of the five senior most judges of the apex court headed by the Chief Justice of India. However, the court refused to entertain Agrawal's plea, saying that the information sought is "neither maintained nor available" with it. The applicant approached the first appellate authority, which also denied him the information. Agrawal then approached the CIC. Stating that the "appointment of justices is decidedly a public activity conducted in the overriding public interest", Chief Information Commissioner Wajahat Habibullah in his Nov 24 order said: "The information sought by appellant will now be provided to him within 15 working days".
  24. Atul Patankar

    Order Order Order ?!???!!

    An article by Anuradha Raman at outlookindia.com in issue dated 01 March 2010 Rarely has a judicial figure struck such a chord with civil society, rarely has a judge’s not being elevated to the Supreme Court generated so much controversy. Former Delhi High Court chief justice Ajit Prakash Shah’s landmark judgements on the rights of the disabled and homosexuals and on bringing the office of the Chief Justice of India under the ambit of rti grabbed headlines and were widely lauded as modern, liberal and democratic. So when he was not moved to the apex court and had to retire on February 12, the obvious question on everyone’s mind was: why was this good judge kept out? It is not clear if the Chief Justice of India, K.G. Balakrishnan, was in favour of Shah’s candidature or not. However, Supreme Court judge S.H. Kapadia is believed to have been the chief dissenting voice in the five-member collegium which decides who should or should not move up to the Supreme Court. Sources attribute this to a professional rivalry dating back to Mumbai when both were judges. Others, however, talk of Kapadia’s unhappiness with two verdicts Shah delivered as the chief justice of the Madras High Court; the former is believed to have told lawyers who met him that the judgements were made for “extraneous reasons”—that is, considerations not germane to the case influenced the judgements. If true, this could be a serious charge against Shah. However, strangely enough, nothing of this sort has been put on record. Nor have the two questionable judgements identified before the legal fraternity. Sources, in fact, say that Justice Shah himself is keen to know which cases these are so that he can defend his judgements. The specific reasons apart, Shah’s exclusion has raised general questions about the process of selecting judges for the Supreme Court. What are the norms for such appointments? Conversely, what are the reasons for rejecting a judge? Are the reasons cited put down in writing? Are appointments made after consultations with the legal fraternity or do they rest on the preferences of a single individual? From what has been reported in the media, Shah appears as anguished as anyone else who believes in a transparent, accountable judiciary. Equally baffling to all is that while Shah has not been considered for elevation to the Supreme Court, the court collegium has been silent on its own recommendation of Justice P.D. Dinakaran, against whom there are several allegations of land-grabbing. Going by press reports, of the five names suggested by the collegium for elevation to the Supreme Court, Dinakaran is one. All this comes as no surprise to former CJI J.S. Verma. The history of the Supreme Court, he says, is full of instances of good legal luminaries being kept out of serving the court. “The question one should be asking is how to ensure that the most suitable get appointed,” says Verma. Other legal experts are realistic enough to point out that several factors like caste- and region-wise representation, religion and politics do come into play. Senior Supreme Court advocate Anil Divan feels there should be a separate statutory body to look into appointments. “Have a body which has a senior judge, outstanding civil servants and respected members of civil society who will be entrusted with the responsibility of selecting judges,” he advocates. Shah’s omission, says senior advocate Prashant Bhushan, underlines the absence of clear criteria in the selection of judges. “Are factors like judicial temperament, sensitivity towards the common man and transparency in making the names of judges public being considered at all?” Bhushan asks. At present, he says, all that’s offered as reason for appointing judges is integrity and competence. How do you measure these, he wants to know. Right through the ’80s till the present, several instances have surfaced from time to time when senior judges have failed to move up while their juniors have marched ahead of them. As many as 43 chief justices of 18 high courts have retired without being elevated to the upper court since the ’90s. Some have even quit in protest. A question legal experts often ask is whether the apex court follows its own judgements vis-a-vis appointments. In a historic judgement by a nine-judge bench in 1993, the judiciary took over the rights of appointment from the executive on the premise that appointments should not rest on the whims and fancies of a single individual. But has exactly the same happened in Shah’s case? Was Kapadia the only one opposed to Shah’s candidature or did all members of the collegium opposed his appointment? Did one judge stand in the way of this appointment? The 1993 judgement also says the opinion of all members of the collegium with respect to each recommendation should be put in writing. Something, experts say, that is hardly observed. “The collegium,” senior lawyer Rajeev Dhawan concludes, “has created a cabal in court and we know nothing about how this cabal functions”. Who is to judge those who judge us? Source: www.outlookindia.com | Order Order Order ?!???!!
  25. When Supreme Court judges adopted a resolution a decade ago to make a periodic declaration of their assets to the Chief Justice of India, they took care to state that the details of their holdings would not be made public. But now, the court is being evasive on whether judges have been filing such declarations at all. In his response to an RTI (right to information) application, the court’s central public information officer (CPIO), additional registrar Ashok Kumar, simply said that the information relating to declaration of assets by judges is "not held by or under the control of" its registry and therefore could not be furnished by him. The file notings, in possession of The Times of India , show that this elusive reply was given with the approval of the Chief Justice of India, Justice K G Balakrishnan, who is himself supposed to be the custodian of those declarations. The file related to the RTI query on asset disclosures was in fact placed before Justice Balakrishnan on two occasions. The first time was when a note prepared by the CPIO on November 27, 2007, was "put up to Hon. CJI for approval" by the head of the SC registry, secretary general V K Jain. The second time was when Jain again "submitted for orders" of the Chief Justice a slightly revised note of the CPIO dated November 30, 2007. The second note bears Justice Balakrishnan’s signature with the same date. In a typically brief reference to the three points proposed to be mentioned in the RTI response, the Chief Justice wrote: "A, B & C approved." What is crucial is point B, which says: "The applicant may be informed that the information relating to declaration of assets by Hon’ble Judges of the Supreme Court is not held by or under the control of the Registry, Supreme Court of India, and therefore cannot be furnished by the CPIO, Supreme Court of India, under the Right to Information Act, 2005." In keeping with the CJI-approved note, the CPIO wrote his formal reply under RTI on that very day, November 30, 2007. The documentation behind the CPIO’s reply and the CJI’s approval of the evasion came to light thanks to another RTI application seeking disclosure of the file notings. It has exposed the apex court’s resistance to transparency: Though the CJI can easily say whether judges have been filing declarations of their assets, the CPIO is made to claim under the RTI Act that the information is not in possession of the registry. The matter is now pending before the Central Information Commission, which will have to give a ruling on whether the Supreme Court could be allowed to make a distinction between its registry and the office of the CJI in an obvious bid to confer immunity on the latter from any obligation under the RTI Act. If the justification offered for stonewalling the question on assets is taken to its logical conclusion, the CPIO for the Supreme Court cannot answer questions related to the CJI’s office and Justice Balakrishnan will therefore have to appoint a separate CPIO for himself. The RTI Act does not exempt the CJI from its purview. ========================= As Reported in Times of India on 14 Apr 2008
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