Right2Information

Right to Information – Master key to good governance

Officer fined Rs 25,000 under RTI Act for denying info

Posted by rtiact2005 on July 10, 2006

Officer fined Rs 25,000 under RTI Act for denying info
Tribune News Service

http://www.tribuneindia.com/2006/20060710/delhi.htm#3

New Delhi, July 9
A Delhi Municipal Corporation officer who denied a citizen data on neighbourhood weekly markets has become the first official to be fined Rs 25,000 by India’s Right to Information Commissioner.

The officer, Mr S. C. Kohli, who till a few weeks ago was Shahdara Deputy Commissioner, South Zone, has since been transferred as Secretary to Commissioner Ashok Kumar, officials said. The position is currently occupied by Mr J. P. Agrawal.

While designated as Public Information Officer, Mr Kohli was requested by Pandav Nagar resident Ajay Kumar Goel for data on makeshift weekly markets and the revenue they generated.

Driving his father to a neighbourhood clinic for emergency treatment about a year ago, Goel found that makeshift shops hampered vehicle movement and access. He discovered a high court order against allowing such weekly markets in residential areas and queried municipal officials in the matter.

According to Chief Information Commissioner Wajahat Habibullah, Mr Goel raised five points. He heard on two from the PIO, but on the remaining three “there was no response.” The CIC’s order indicates that evasive responses by PIOs are inadequate and won’t do.

“The PIO did mention that the removal of weekly bazaars being a policy matter could not be decided at the zonal level,” the order noted but pointed out that the appellant had sought information— not action.

The order said, “The choice before the PIO was clear.” If the information on implementation of the high court orders is in his possession he should have provided it;

if it is not, he should have sought it under Section 5 (4) from any level of the public authority of which he is the PIO;

If the information is not with that public authority, he should have referred it to the requisite public authority under Section 6 (3) (ii) within five days of getting the appeal.

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One Response to “Officer fined Rs 25,000 under RTI Act for denying info”

  1. THIS IS REALLY WELCOMING STEP. ALLL GOVT OFFICERS .MUST WAKE UP AND TAKE UP APPROPRITE ACTION.

    KIRAN
    STATE RESOURCE PERSON
    RTI ACT, 2005 ASSAM

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