WHAT AFTER DECISION BY CENTRAL/STATE INFORMATION COMMISSIONER
There are a large number of instances, where the State Information Commissioners are passing orders contrary to the spirit and object of RTI Act and contradicting the laid down procedures. Another issue is the Public Authorities did not comply the decisions of CIC/SIC and the Information Commissions are not strict about enforcing penal provisions under section-20. The Information Seekers feel they were pushed to the dead end. There is a common feeling that no appeal lies against the decision of State Information Commissioner. Let us examine it.
Instances that involve disclosure of sensitive information, it may be rationale for the CPIO to ask for citizenship proof
Information Commissioner Divya Prakash Sinha held that seeking citizenship proof in case of demand of sensitive information is justified but seeking a signed copy of the application does not seem appropriate as the online portal does not mandate uploading of signatures.
Sinha was hearing the plea of an Odisha-based RTI applicant who had sought from the Army information regarding implementation of rules under the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 in all defence establishments.
The Army did not provide any information to the applicant, the CIC noted. Akhand approached the Commission with a complaint that the central public information officer (CPIO) of the Army has demanded a signed copy of his online RTI application as well as identity proof before providing him the records.
“In this regard, it may be noted that as far as CPIO’s request for citizenship proof is concerned, the same is not questioned as Commission in its prior decision(s) has held the view that Armed Forces stand on a slightly different footing as there may be instances that involve disclosure of sensitive information, and for such reasons it may be rationale for the CPIO to ask for citizenship proof,” Sinha noted.
Originally posted here!
Some of you -- at least CJ Karira, who helped me years ago in one crucial step, getting SEBI to acknowledge its own circular! -- know of a 15-year quest among desi academics to get SEBI to release its stale masked FII data for academic research. At one point years ago a parliamentary query by Shyam Benegal, then Rajya Sabha MP, sought the release of this data for academic research. He then made a subsequent RTI query asking what had done about his complaint about the terrible answer he got to his parliamentary question. We thought we had succeeded when in response to that SEBI did put in public domain that FII data and promised to update. And to their credit, they did update it from time to time, even if a bit fitfully. But thanks to a question by a curious IIT-Madras undergrad, we realized that what SEBI gave with one hand they took away with another. While the idea was that the FII IDs would be masked to preserve privacy, without telling anyone, SEBI changed the masks each month, drastically reducing the value for academic research (since you can't even tell how many distinct FIIs are there in the data base, and whether anyone traded over time). It also caused mistakes in academic research since no one imagined that SEBI would use changing masks, when no other regulator or exchange on the planet does so.
To get SEBI to finally agree to not hide by changing masks, but to keep a stable mask, has taken many years. But at least per the ruling received yesterday, it has been achieved, with no violence to anyone. I attach the ruling. I can also post the various submissions made at the Second Appeal hearing if there is any interest (need to scrub email-IDs, per the policy of this site).
Addendum_To_CIC_2nd_appeal_28th_February_2020.pdfThis RTI site, in particular Karira-ji, has been very helpful to me in the course of this long episode thru countless RTI queries. And I am grateful for that from the bottom of my heart. I am confident we will see quite a few PhD dissertations using this database within the next few years.
Third_Addendum to Additional Submission for RTI Second Appeal_2nd_March_2020.pdf
From_SEBI_Written Submiissions - Murugappa Krishnan 139953.pdf