Decided on December 31,2013

STATE Appellant
Nodal Cpio, Cic Respondents


A.K.Dash, Additional Secretary and First Appellate Authority - (1.) BRIEF facts of the case : Shrihas filed two First Appeals; first appeal vide his letter dated 13 -11 -2013, diarised in the Commission on 14 -11 -2013 and received in the office of FAA on 18 -11 -2013 against the CPIO reply dated 8 -11 -2013 in response to his RTI application dated 9 -10 -2013. His second appeal is dated 22 -11 -2013, diarised in the Commission on 22 -11 -2013 and received in the office of FAA on 25 -11 -2013 against the response of CPIO vide letter dated 8 -11 -2013 in response to his RTI application dated 9 -10 -2013 read with inspection note No. 559, dated 18 -11 -2013. Notice was issued for hearing on 11 -12 -2013 at 1430 hrs. when Nodal CPIO was not present. The Nodal CPIO was directed to be present during the hearing scheduled on 11 -12 -2013 at 1430 hrs. vide notice dated 26 -11 -2013. However, a note has been received from him informing that he would not be participating in the hearing. A reply to the note has been sent to Nodal CPIO separately. During the hearing on 11 -12 -2013, the appellant submitted that Shri Pankaj KP Shreyaskar, Joint Secretary and Nodal CPIO was not present and he requested that the matter be heard in presence of the Nodal CPIO as there are material issues where the inputs from the Nodal CPIO are required. The appellant also requested that his Appeal dated 22 -11 -2013 arising out of the same RTI application may also be heard along with this appeal as the subject matter is same.
(2.) IN view of the specific submissions by the appellant to defer the appeal hearing so that the Nodal CPIO can participate, the hearing was postponed to 13 -12 -2013 at 1130 hr. when both the appeals mentioned at paras 1 and 2 would be heard. The appellant was informed accordingly. Nodal CPIO was directed to attend the hearing on the above date and time.
(3.) THE matter was heard on 13 -12 -2013 when both the Nodal CPIO and the appellant were present, Shri S.K. Rabbani, Dy. Secy. (Admn.). and CPIO, Shri Rakesh Sharma, former CPIO and Shri M.K. Sharma, Registrar were also present. Decision with reasons: During the hearing the appellant has submitted the following for consideration: - - (i) That the Nodal CPIO should have refrained from dealing with this RTI application as the information directly relates to him. Therefore, the order of the CPIO is incorrect and illegal and liable to be set aside. There is a violation of principles of natural justice and the action of the Nodal CPIO is liable to be set aside on this ground. (ii) That the information sought under item No. (A) was not provided. However, it was mentioned that response at para (E) in the reply of CPIO dated 8 -11 -2013 will take care of his request. Under item (A), specific information viz. copy of relevant order/note sheets were called for while vide his reply dated 8 -11 -2013, the CPIO merely offered to inspect the file mentioned in item (E) of the RTI application. (iii) The CPIO has refused to disclose the information contained at pages 18 -19 of the file mentioned at item (E) stating that it contains his personal information, disclosure of which has no relationship to any public activity. The grounds or reasons and the type of documents or information on which exemption on the ground of personal information has been sought, has not been disclosed by the CPIO. The aspect of promotion or designation is a part of public activity. Therefore, all records relating thereto are part of records of public authority created as a part of official work. (iv) That the Nodal CPIO has with -held page No. 23 of the note sheet and pages 28 to 30, 45 to 57 and 80 to 85 of the correspondence of the said file mentioned against point (E) of the RTI application during the inspection on 18 -11 -2013. Nodal CPIO having allowed inspection of the entire file except two pages of note sheets (18 & 19) should have allowed the inspection of entire correspondence. (v) The appellant has made more personal allegations against the Nodal CPIO regarding obtaining "no objection certificate" and permission for doing part time course or programme for Ph.D and M. Phil from JNU. The appellant has requested for providing him the information which has been denied by the Nodal CPIO as mentioned in his letter addressed to appellant on 20 -11 -2013. During the hearing, he has also pressed that the Nodal CPIO should be directed to give parawise comments on the points raised in his appeal. (vi) The Nodal CPIO categorically has strongly objected to the appellant making personal allegations of bias against him. He stated that he has allowed inspection of the file himself merely to ensure that the appellant gets the benefit of inspection promptly. (vii) That note sheets 18 & 19 of File No. 2/3/2012/CIC/Adm. deals with grant of Earned Leave to Shri Pankaj KP Shreyaskar, Director -cum -Joint Registrar from 13 -2 -2013 to 18 -2 -2013 and 13 -6 -2013 to 17 -6 -2013 to avail LTC. Sl. No. 19 of the note sheet is regarding sending a copy of the 'No objection Certificate' to Shri Pankaj KP Shreyaskar by MoS(PI), Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MOSPI) for pursuing his Ph.D on part time basis.;

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