File No. CIC/WB/C/2008/00513. Case: Dr. P.K. Srivastava Vs CPIO, Department of Personnel & Training. Central Information Commission

Case NumberFile No. CIC/WB/C/2008/00513
JudgesSatyananda Mishra, Chief Information Commissioner
IssueRight to Information Act, 2005 - Sections 2(f), 20(1)
Judgement DateAugust 26, 2013
CourtCentral Information Commission


Satyananda Mishra, Chief Information Commissioner

1. Both the parties were present during the hearing had made their submissions. In this case, on a complaint received from the present Complainant, the CIC had passed an order in 19 May 2008 directing the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) to pay a compensation of Rs. 43,240/- to the complainant for not providing the information to him in time. The DoPT had challenged this order before the Delhi High Court. In its order dated 9 April 2013, the Delhi High Court quashed the order of the CIC regarding payment of compensation and remanded the case back to the CIC to pass an appropriate order under section 20(1) of the Right to Information (RTI) Act after hearing both the parties.

2. Following the above direction, we heard both the parties. The respondent representing the DoPT submitted that the original RTI application dated 20 March 2008 could not be physically found in the RR section and that could be the reason why the then CPIO had not an occasion to respond to it. She clarified further that since the then Under Secretary in charge this particular section had retired, it could not be ascertained from him if he had any knowledge of the original RTI application. She also submitted that the Appellant had filed a second RTI application on 2 July 2008 which was duly received and the CPIO concerned had replied to that application on 22 July 2008. In fact, the complainant had filed a first appeal against that reply and the Appellate Authority had disposed of the appeal by providing copies of certain Office Memoranda issued by the Department, from time to time, on the subject of Flexible Complementing Scheme (FCS), the main subject of the RTI application.

3. Now, the question is whether the CPIO concerned should be penalised for not responding to the original RTI application dated 20 March 2008. We have carefully considered the facts of the case. We understand that this RTI application had been received in the Department as recorded in the computerised data base of the Department. However, it was not physically available in the (Recruitment Rules) RR section responsible for providing the relevant information. Now that the Under Secretary...

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