Wednesday, October 20, 2021
Follow us on
BREAKING NEWS
आज उत्तराखंड जाएंगे गृह मंत्री अमित शाह, बाढ़ की स्थिति की करेंगे समीक्षाउत्तराखंड में केदारनाथ यात्रा को हरी झंडी, फिर हुई शुरूजम्मू-कश्मीर: पुंछ में सेना और आतंकियों के बीच मुठभेड़ शुरूकुशीनगर यूपी का तीसरा अंतरराष्ट्रीय एयरपोर्ट बना, 26 नवंबर से दिल्ली से शुरू होगी यहां के लिए फ्लाइटहर साल 5 लाख रुपये तक कैशलेस मेडिकल सुविधा ले सकेंगे नंबरदार – दुष्यंत चौटालाजन समस्याओं का हल राज से होता है, इस्तीफा देने से नहीं – डॉ. अजय चौटालास्वास्थ्य विभाग के अधिकारी डेंगू की रोकथाम के लिए आवश्यक कदम उठाएं- स्वास्थ्य मंत्रीमंडियों में भीग रही है किसान की फसल, तमाशबीन बनी देख रही सरकार- हुड्डा
National

CIC upholds DoPT’s non-disclosure to RTI

February 10, 2021 05:23 AM

COURTESY HT FEB 10

CIC upholds DoPT’s non-disclosure to RTI
Chetan Chauhan

letters@hindustantimes.com

New Delhi : The Central Information Commission (CIC) has upheld the Department of Personnel and Training’s (DoPT) refusal to share minutes of meetings headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, to select the country’s anti-corruption ombudsman, Lokpal, under the Right to Information Act, saying the Supreme Court had also refused to direct the government to provide the said information.

The government appointed former Supreme Court judge Pinaki Chandra Bose as the first Lokpal of the country on March 19, 2019. RTI activist Anjali Bhardwaj filed an application with DoPT, seeking a copy of the minutes of the meetings of the committee that selected Bose.

The central public information officer (CPIO) of DoPT declined to share the information saying that the minutes of the Lokpal selection committee meetings were marked as “secret” and therefore, cannot be shared. The officer , however, provided details of when the selection committee meetings were held and who participated in them.

Bhardwaj, in her appeal before CIC, said that marking a file as “secret” is not a ground under the RTI law to deny information, and claimed CPIO had not used any provisions of the transparency law to deny the information sought. “Under the law, access to information can be rejected only on the grounds mentioned in section 8 or section 9 of the RTI Act. Secret is defined under the Officials Secrets Act, which is not applicable under RTI,” she said.

Rejecting her claim, information commissioner Saroj Punhani relied on two SC judgements to deny the information sought by Bhardwaj. The first was issued in a case related to the constitution of Lokpal by the Central government in 2014. The SC said with regard to prayer of lawyer Prashan Bhushan to put names recommend by search committee in public domain that no direction should be assigned in this regard. “Rather the matter should be left for a just determination by the selection committee as and when the meeting of the committee is convened,” the court said.

The second was regard to transparency in appointment of information commissioners by the central government. In its order in 2018, the SC said DoPT has put names of the applications for posts of information commissioners, names of members of the search committee, agenda of the search committee and minutes on its website, which shows the process was transparent.

In its order, CIC said that the process of selection commission of appointment of the information commissioners and the Lokpal is same in nature. “Therefore, the commission is of the considered view that in the instant matter, CPIO upheld the interest of transparency by informing the (RTI) appellant regarding all the details of the selection committee and its meetings; hence the question of lack of transparency does not hold ground,” the information watchdog’s order said.

Nikhil Dey of National Campaign for People’s Right to Information said, “I would have liked CIC to address the concerns raised by Bhardwaj in its order. Now, SC (orders) will be a ground to deny information under RTI.

 
Have something to say? Post your comment
More National News
कुशीनगर यूपी का तीसरा अंतरराष्ट्रीय एयरपोर्ट बना, 26 नवंबर से दिल्ली से शुरू होगी यहां के लिए फ्लाइट प्रधानमंत्री नरेंद्र मोदी से मिले गृह मंत्री अमित शाह, पीएम आवास पहुंचकर की मुलाकात महाराष्ट्रः कल्याण की आधारवाड़ी जेल में 20 कैदी कोरोना पॉजिटिव, ठाणे के अस्पताल में भर्ती केरलः भारी बारिश से तबाह कोट्टायम पहुंची NDRF की टीम, शुरू किया रेस्क्यू ऑपरेशन सीएम भूपेश बघेल ने जशपुर घटना में मारे गए शख्स के परिवार को 50 लाख मुआवजा देने का किया ऐलान जेईई एडवांस का रिजल्ट जारी, मृदुल अग्रवाल ऑल इंडिया टॉपर पीएम मोदी ने देश को दी 7 नई डिफेंस कंपनियों की सौगात, पिस्टल से फाइटर प्लेन तक बनाएंगी NIA के डीजी जम्मू-कश्मीर के लिए रवाना, आतंक के खिलाफ हो रहे ऑपरेशन की समीक्षा करेंगे MP: गरबा पंडालों में गैर हिंदुओं के प्रवेश पर रोक की मांग, विहिप ने लगाए पोस्टर प्रियंका गांधी, दीपेंदर हुड्डा और भूपेश बघेल वाराणसी के लिए रवाना