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CIC: Info regarding pension is a "life or liberty" matter


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CIC has ruled that information regarding pension of the applicant is a matter related to "life or liberty" and should be responded to within 48 hours.

 

 

http://www.rti.india.gov.in/cic_decisions/CIC_DS_A_2013_001589-SA_M_140143.pdf

 

 

Summary:

When a woman below poverty line was surviving on pension from social welfare department,

nonpayment of pension would cause a serious problem of living, the RTI request about nonpayment

of pension is information about ’life and liberty’ of appellant and the respondent

authority should have responded to within 48 hours. The stand taken by the respondent

authority that the pension is stopped as there was no bank account is unreasonable and not

acceptable. Going by reasonability, common sense and legal duty, the respondent authority

would have continued paying pension to the appellant through the Post Office Account, till

she got the account opened in the bank. CIC ordered payment of dues of pension Rs 43,500

with simple interest from due date to date of restoration and Rs 5000 as compensation. The

public authority has to put in place a mechanism of not stopping the pension till the

communication is reached the pensioners and respond to their general enquiries and RTI

question very promptly without any delay, maximum in 48 hours from the date of receipt of

request.

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Prasad GLN

Again the decision is from same IC SA, who is more liberal to social problems and the decision is the best decision by any IC so far, as it directly touches common man.

(Particularly when six persons lost their lives while filing applications for such pensions before Post offices during this Dec,14. One can see people aged at 80 and physically disabled waiting in queue right from 6 am for their turn to open savings bank account post offices without providing any extra staff for additional load. They are simply starving and there is not even drinking water facility for them. No need to mention that several post offices stopped usual transactions meant for PO)

 

But the pity is that Pensions are State Govt., schemes, and most honorable state information commissioners openly defy such well considered decisions and say that they are not binding on State Commissions. Neither they work creatively and public friendly nor implement other's good decisions. May be SA may become competitive to Ex Hon IC SG, but another sorry affair is IC SA is restricted to Delhi only. May be there are chances for him to become CIC one day.

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