Right to Information – Master key to good governance

Want info under RTI? Pay Rs 4.7 lakh!

Posted by rtiact2005 on July 11, 2006

Want info under RTI? Pay Rs 4.7 lakh!
[ 10 Jul, 2006 2358hrs ISTTIMES NEWS NETWORK ]


Want info under RTI? Pay Rs 4.7 lakh!


Ahmedabad: Guess how much it can cost a man for seeking information under the Right To Information (RTI) Act? If he is asking for information from the Gujarat State Wakf Board, it can cost him close to Rs 5 lakh!

Setting a record of sorts, the Wakf Board has demanded a fee of Rs 4,74,690 from Hussain Arab, an Ahmedabad-based member of Hazrat-Bada-Adrus Trust, for answering five questions under the RTI Act. This amount is claimed to be highest fee asked by any authority ever since the Act was passed by the Centre on October 12, 2005.

Arab, 61, a resident of Paldi in Ahmedabad, had applied for information on February 6. He had sought an explanation on the board’s alleged irregular administration and reasons for not implementing a scheme passed by the Gujarat charity commissioner in 2001. Arab had also sought information about properties owned by Muslim trusts in Ahmedabad, Surat and Bharuch.

“The board responded to my application within the stipulated 30 days. However, what I received was a quotation signed by the public information officer of the board, M A Shaikh, demanding a fee of Rs 4,74,690 for documents and information,” Arab said. TOI has a copy of the letter, dated March 1, 2006.

Chief executive officer of the board, A K Ansari said, “We are ready to provide him with the information. It was estimated that the information will require 57,345 copies of A-4 size and 24,000 copies of larger sized paper. This amount is the governmentspecified fee that we are demanding for printouts and copies of the records and documents.”

City-based human rights’ activist, Harinesh Pandya, from Mahiti Adhikar Gujarat Pahel, however, says, “The board just wants to cover up its irregularities. All that he has sought for can come in few sheets of papers. Arab has asked for information and not records.” Pandya said. According to the RTI Act , application fees have to be reasonable. If further fees are required, then the information officer must intimate in writing with details of the calculations.


One Response to “Want info under RTI? Pay Rs 4.7 lakh!”

  1. Gope Lalwani said

    Misuse and Mockery Of Indian law and Judiciary.

    Dear Sirs,

    There are hundreds of victims of blackmail and extortion,
    involving NRI’s and Indian diaspora in the criminal cases
    registered in India, without any punishment to the blackmailer.

    NRI’s and Indian Diaspora families are separated from
    their near and dear ones in India. They can not invest
    in India even if they want to invest in big way.

    They have been prevented to visit India even for social
    or religious purposes for years till false cases are ended
    for fear of arrest without bail and jailed without committing
    any offence or breaking the laws of land.

    Abuse of anti-dowry laws has become serious enough
    that the United States Department of State has
    published the following travel warning on its Web site,
    http://travel.state.gov, about “Dowry/Visa Demands” for
    travellers to India.

    Angela Aggeler, a spokesperson for the State Department
    in Washington, D.C., says that “American citizens are often
    extremely desirable” to Indian families with marriageable daughters.

    Aggeler, who has lived in India, says she empathises with
    citizens in this predicament.
    “I know how complicated the law is in India,” she says.
    Aggeler says the State Department decided to publish the travel
    warning after receiving information from the three U.S. embassies
    in India as well as from local law enforcement agencies and global
    agencies such as Interpol

    In this case; a false Criminal Complaint was registered in India
    against entire US Citizens family under section 498A with the
    collusion and connivance of the police and law enforcing machinery.
    She got US citizens arrested at Mumbai Air-port, while returning
    from short visit to India visiting 92 years old ailing grand Mother, in
    June 2003 after about 2 months of receiving and acknowledging the
    US Decree of divorce of April 2003, in which, she has been named “blackmailer and extortionist” in proceedings.

    She did not disclose in the F.I.R ” that the Divorce proceedings
    were going on against her in US court and she had filed her
    response in September 2002 asking for Rs. one crore as
    alimony alternatively restoration of conjugal rights.

    Complainant had also sought assistance of “abused women’s”
    organisation in US in her divorce matter, but the organisation’s
    lawyer withdrew as soon as it became clear that her case was
    based on Blackmail and Extortion.

    She has not made any allegations ( such as made in the police
    complaint in India ) to the US women’s organisation’ or US police.
    This is clear evidence of manipulation, misuse and naked abuse of
    Indian Legal and Judicial System by the unscrupulous woman in
    collusion with corrupt Indian Law enforcing machinery for Extortion.

    Matter is legally very simple, that the marriage was solemnised in US.
    They lived in US after marriage and never visited India together.
    The divorce was also decided according to US laws by US Court.
    The Indian Courts have no Jurisdiction at all is clear.

    The criminal proceedings have been launched under Indian
    Dowry Prohibition Act, and section 498A under which the
    competent authority to deal with such matters is designated
    as “Cruelty Against Women’s” Cells.
    Even Commissioner of Police has no authority to deal with
    these complaints directly.
    “CAW” Cells have to look into the complaints and thoroughly
    investigate and justify the prosecution of accused.
    “CAW” Cells after full Investigation have to hand over the case
    to police for the prosecution.
    In Mumbai, the “Maharashtra Commission for Women” (MCW)
    is the designated competent authority.
    The Officers designated to investigate the allegations before
    recommending prosecution by police must not be below the
    rank of deputy superintendent of police.

    In this matter the assistant police Inspector has abused, over-riding
    all the legal authorities, designated by the legislation and registered
    the criminal case and launched prosecution with connivance and
    collusion of Indian Judicial Machinery

    The marriage and the divorce including the allegations in this matter
    are subject to US legal Jurisdiction. Nothing in this matter happened
    within the Jurisdiction and territory in India.

    The Courts in India have no jurisdiction at all to proceed and prosecute
    foreign national for the offences allegedly committed by him in his own
    country. Indian courts are not the International Court of Justice.
    The conduct of law enforcing machinery in India, in this matter is most irresponsible and undesirable.

    The residential property used as vacation home in India was
    searched without obtaining necessary search warrants from higher
    authorities or informing to local police jurisdiction by the said assistant
    Inspector of police.

    Under Article 226 of Constitution of India, the Prosecution has no
    Jurisdiction to even investigate the alleged offences even if TRUE.

    Under section 177 of criminal procedure code 1973 of India;
    No part of cause of action arose within the jurisdiction of the
    court where the complaint was filed and Non-bailable arrest warrants
    were obtained against entire family of US citizens without any
    investigation or evidence and arrest warrants executed.
    The entire proceedings have no foundation, and this is the question
    of law regarding lack of Jurisdiction.

    Section 188 states that courts in India can not take cognisance
    of any offence against foreign national without “Previous approval
    of central government ministry of External Affairs”.
    There is also no evidence that any attempt is made to obtain
    approval or any attempt was made, to inform to higher authorities,
    so far as required by law.
    Even higher authorities in police department of government of
    Maharashtra were not informed about arrest of foreign nationals.

    Under Section 406 of Indian Penal Code 1860 the alleged acts
    which took place beyond the territory of India, even if assumed
    to be correct does not make out the case to proceed against the
    accused. An FIR can only be filed in the court of concerned area
    to who’s jurisdiction the offence has occurred.

    Under Section 482 of India’s Criminal Procedure Code 1973, the
    courts in India has no jurisdiction to entertain the complaint even
    if allegation there in are accepted in Toto.

    Domicile is the key to matrimonial proceedings.
    This was held by the bench of Bombay High Court, comprising
    Justices S.B. Mhase and Dilip Bhosle.
    They held that,
    “Domicile is essential condition for both the bride
    and groom were domiciled in India at the time of
    their marriage being solemnised in India”
    They also held that,
    “Even if one of the spouse is not domiciled in
    India at the time of alleged marriage even if
    assumed that marriage took place in India,
    the proceedings in India are bad in Law.

    The obligations under Article 36 of Vienna consular Convention
    Treaty of which India is signatory were also not honoured after
    arrest and confiscation of passports of foreign nationals by the
    Mumbai police authorities.

    None of the offences shown in the FIR registered by Indian Police
    were committed within the jurisdiction of the said Police Station.
    The FIR clearly indicates that the alleged offences took place in
    New York USA.
    The FIR does not disclose Prima-Facie offence taking place within
    the jurisdiction of India.

    The case registered by the Assistant Police Inspector is a criminal conspiracy ,criminal intimidation and framing of incorrect records and
    writings by Public Servant.
    This offence is punishable under section 218, 506, 167 and 120 B
    Indian Penal Code.

    The complainant is also liable to be prosecuted and punished under
    Sections 177,181,182,191,193,195,200,211,383,385,500 504 and506,
    for filing false and fraudulent complaint for Blackmail and Extortion.

    The Indian Passport in the hands of such Dangerous manipulator
    who dares to fool the law and Law Enforcing Machinery need to be
    withdrawn, by Ministry of Home Affairs.

    The passport need to be impounded or revoked for the offences
    involving MORAL TURPITUDE under section 10 (3) (c) (d).(e) (h).
    of Passport Act.

    Misuse and Mockery of Indian law and Judiciary must be stopped
    and Blackmailers punished.


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