Friday, January 8, 2010

[rti_india] Plenary Powers - Examples and Citations


Dear Mr Sarbajit,

Here are some examples.
I would also like to mention that IC MLS is the only IC using such "plenary powers".
Never saw any order of any other IC using such "plenary powers".
Vide RTI application dated 29.8.2008, the appellant had sought photocopies of the Measurement Book for 2008. When queried as to why no information was provided to the appellant, Shri P.K. Sharma would submit that the appellant had not produced proof of deposition of fee of Rs. 10/-.
6 Be that as it may, in exercise of its plenary powers, the requirement of fee is waived off. The appellant scales down his requirement for information to Ward Nos. I, II & VI, for the period January, 2008 to August, 2009.
As regards paras 2 & 3 of the RTI application, the appellant was offered copies of documents on payment of fee. However, he has not awaited of this offer.
4. In exercise of our plenary powers, we direct the CPIO to provide copies of these documents to the appellant, free of cost.
In exercise of its plenary powers, the Commission hereby orders that the present RTI application may be treated as application having been filed under section 6(1) of the RTI Act.
The matter was heard on 24.6.2009. The complainant is not present. The public authority is represented by the officers named above. It is the submission of Ms. Rane that no information has been provided to the complainant as his RTI application was not accompanied with requisite fee of Rs. 10/-.
3. In excise of its plenary powers, the Commission waives off the requirement of the fee and directs Ms. Rane to provide requisite information to the complainant in next 03 weeks time.
Be it as it may, the RTI application could not be entertained due to technical reasons and in the process valuable time was lost. Its time now to resolve the issue by way of furnishing requisite information to the complainant. The Commission condones the requirement of fee in excise of its plenary powers under the RTI Act.
The matter was fixed for hearing on 2.6.2009. The parties did not appear. Non-appearance of the representative of EPFO is viewed adversely. The Commission in excise of its plenary powers u/s 19 (8) (a) condons the irregularities in the deposition of fee and directs the CPIO to provide information in the tabulated form to the complainant in 04 weeks time.
(Here he has used the word "expedient" instead of "plenary"
As mentioned above, DDA does not have any objection to providing him copies of documents but he has been asked to pay certain fee for it. In the facts and circumstances of the case, it appears expedient to the Commission that the Appellant takes inspection of the documents and also is provided copies of specified documents, free of cost, but the number of such documents should not exceed 200.
(This looks like a "borderline" example to me)
Heard on 11.9.2009. Appellant not present. The public authority is represented by the officers named above. It is the submission of Shri Aarsee Prasad that there has been no delay on his part in disposing of the RTI application in as much as RTI application was received on 4.3.2009 and the same was decided on 1.4.2009. The contention of the CPIO is correct and, therefore, the plea of delay on the part of CPIO is not sustainable. It may, however, be noted that as per the provision of law, the appellant is entitled for information at the prescribed fee. Even so, in exercise of its plenary powers, the Commission waves off the requirement of payment of Rs. 168/- by the appellant and directs the CPIO to provide him requisite documents free of cost.
In the complaint filed before the Commission, Shri Joshi has mentioned that his RTI application was dismissed out of hand by NHRC on the technical ground of the fee of Rs. 10/- not been deposited in the proper form and asking him to send the fee as prescribed in the rules...........
3. Shri Joshi is hereby advised to send a fresh letter to NHRC clearly indicating the information required by him, whereupon the PIO will send him the requisite response. The requirement of fee of Rs. 10/- is hereby waived off by the Commission in exercise of its plenary powers.
It is to be noted that under section 7(6) of the RTI Act, information is to be provided free of cost where a public authority fails to conform with the time limits prescribed in section 7(1). The question before us is whether the prescribed time limits have been transgressed. It needs to be reiterated that RTI application was filed on 26/12/2008 which, according to Dr. Gaikward, was received in his office on 09/01/2009. This was decided by him on 04/02/2009, i.e., within the statutory period. The plea of Dr. Gaikward, thus, appears to have merit that information cannot be provided free of cost, let alone payment of any compensation. Even so, given the fact that only 13 pages of the documents are required to be provided, the Commission, in exercise of its plenary powers, orders that certified copies of the requested documents my be provided, free of cost, regardless of the fact that the CPIO had decided the appeal within the statutory period. There is no case for payment of any compensation.
(Here he has waived off the limitation period for appeal)


From: sarbajitr <>

If you have specific examples which violate my analysis please cite them.



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