Sunday, February 19, 2012

Re: [HumJanenge] Central Information Commission warns the public authorities against demanding proof of citizenship from RTI applicants .

a citizen does not need any help from any advocate for seeking
information. treasury receipt, IPO, DD, cash payment can be used for
making payment

On 2/19/12, john philipose <> wrote:
> Dear Sir, can a citizen ask for info himself or he has to route it thru an
> advocate? If yes would just a treasury receipt of Rs 10/- need to be
> attached or is there a form for the purpose?Regards
> On Sun, Feb 19, 2012 at 5:50 PM, Mohammed Afzal
> <>wrote:
>> Hi,
>> As per the RTI Act plz address application to the Public Information
>> Officer, office of the Education Minister with address.
>> Same goes for the Director of Education.
>> Best Regds - Mohammed Afzal.
>> Sent from my iPhone
>> On 19-Feb-2012, at 12:12 PM, Hari Goyal <> wrote:
>> Dear Mr. Gill,
>> My opinion in this case is as follows:
>> You may file a RTI application seeking information under Right to
>> Information Act, 2005 to Minister of Education (by name) and to Director
>> of
>> Education
>> both of Delhi Government by sending an IPO as application fee of Rs. 10/-
>> immediately.
>> 2. I do not know the practice in AP and MP and we don't need to know.
>> 3. With all the publicity the CM of Delhi getting, you will certainly
>> get an answer.
>> With best wishes,
>> Hari Goyal
>> (Dr. Hari Dev Goyal)
>> Indian Economic Service (1968 Batch)
>> Director, RTI & Consumer Protection Centre-Dwarka
>> Phones: 011- 2
>> Date: Sat, 18 Feb 2012 21:22:20 +0530
>> Subject: Re: [HumJanenge] Central Information Commission warns the public
>> authorities against demanding proof of citizenship from RTI applicants .
>> From:
>> To:;
>> Dear Sir,
>> I wish to seek guidance for the following case:
>> a) Can a private school (say DPS) is justified in asking parents for
>> addmission fee from old students of school, when they get promoted from
>> one
>> class to the other? Can an indivisual seek information under RTI about
>> their policy on taking 'addmission fee'
>> from old students each year, when they get promoted in next class.
>> b) If answer to above is yes, then what should be the procedure say in AP
>> or MP? Can stamps of INR 10.00 be attached with the application?
>> c) What could be a suggested FORMAT of the application & its wording.
>> Thanks
>> IS Gill
>> On Sat, Feb 18, 2012 at 7:37 PM, Pradip Pradhan <
>> > wrote:
>> Central Information Commission warns the public authorities against
>> demanding proof of citizenship from RTI applicants .
>> Dear friends,
>> While deciding a Complaint Case ( File No; CIC/AD/C/2011/001736 on
>> 11.1.2012,, Ms. Annapurna Dixit, Central Information Commissioner
>> observed, "there is no provision in the RTI Act to seek
>> identification of a citizen who seeks information from any Public
>> Authority. The PIO of the Company is warned not to seek such
>> identification in future u/s 3 of the RTI Act, which stipulates that
>> all citizens shall have the Right to Information, as it would be
>> construed by the Commission as deemed denial". The fact of the case is
>> that an RTI Applicant Mr. M Rangarajan of Bangalore had sought
>> information about the provision of retirement benefits of the
>> employees from the PIO, M/s. Braithwaite and Company Ltd under
>> Ministry of Railways, 5, Hide Road, Kolkata - 700 043. But the said
>> PIO quoting Section 3 of the Act demanded the proof of citizenship
>> identity of the applicant before he would be able to disclose the
>> information sought. Then the aggrieved applicant approached the
>> Central Information Commission with a complaint against the said
>> illegal order of the PIO. Having heard the parties to the case, the
>> CIC Mrs.Dixit passed the above order quoted above.
>> Now, let us have a look at the procedure of submitting RTI Application
>> in Odisha. The State Govt. has made a provision under Odisha Right
>> to Information Rules 2005 for submission of proof of identity of
>> citizenship along with RTI application being made to any Public
>> Authority. Besides a Compulsory and a lengthy 11-column "Form-A" has
>> been prescribed by the State Govt. wherein the Column No.4 requires
>> submission of Proof of Citizenship in the shape of a copy of Voter's
>> Card or Passport. If an RTI Applicant fails to attach the said
>> proof of Citizenship, the PIO has been given absolute power in
>> Form-C ( Intimation of Rejection) to reject the application on the
>> ground that "your identity is not satisfactory'. . This queer
>> provision contradicts the letter and spirit of Section 6 (2) of the
>> RTI Act, which says, "An applicant making request for information
>> shall not be required to give any reason for requesting the
>> information or any other personal details except those that may be
>> necessary for contacting him". This provision also deprives
>> millions of young people in Odisha and outside of their right to apply
>> for information to any public authority located in Odisha, for the
>> obvious reasons that they being underaged can't have a voter's card
>> and they, in absence of any compelling need, may not have any passport
>> either. Besides quite many adult persons may not have a voter's card
>> at all, since it is not a compulsory provision at all to have a voter
>> card.. Thus millions of people in and outside Odisha who are bonafide
>> citizens because of their domicile within territory of India and thus
>> entitled to apply for information under Section 3 of the Act are
>> defrauded of this statutory right due to the ultra vires RTI Rules of
>> Odisha.
>> Besides, the mode of payment of application fees is either through
>> Treasury Challan or through cash. It means that every person, wherever
>> he or she may be located, has to physically visit the concerned office
>> to remit the application fee to the PIO, no matter the amount to be
>> paid is a trifle. Alternatively, he or she may post the application
>> fee through Treasury Challan. But as everybody knows, for collecting a
>> Treasury Challan of Rs.10/-, one has to visit the nearest town where
>> the Treasury Office may be located, stand in the queue for as many
>> hours as is required and also remember the excessively long Treasury
>> Code of the RTI application fee which is humanly impossible. Every RTI
>> applicant in Odisha has thus to pass through a hell of hassles in
>> availing the Treasury Challan of Rs.10/- to be attached to his or her
>> RTI application. But still funniest is the predicament of a citizen
>> living outside Odisha, who can neither afford to visit Odisha simply
>> to pay in cash the application fee of Rs.10/- to the concerned PIO nor
>> can arrange a Treasury Challan of Rs.10/- for remittance by post for
>> the said purpose, for the simple reason that there is no Office of
>> Odisha Treasury located outside Odisha. For such prohibitive modes of
>> payment, no person from outside Odisha has yet applied for information
>> under RTI Act to any public authority located in Odisha, and most
>> common people living inside Odisha have stayed away from using RTI Act
>> during last 6 and half years. In a nutshell, the Orissa RTI Rules can
>> be called Odisha RTI Disentitlement Rules.
>> However, the tragedy is that in Odisha such anti-RTI and anti-citizens
>> provisions are upheld and justified by Odisha information
>> commissioners during hearing of the cases and as well in course of
>> their address in public meetings. The only lame excuse they
>> unabashedly proffer in defense of the above anti-citizen Rules is that
>> the State Govt. has framed it. While saying so, the Commissioners
>> blissfully ignore Section 25(5) of the Act, which authorizes the
>> Commission to recommend to any public authority including the State
>> Govt. to take steps for removing any deviation and effecting
>> conformity to the letter and spirit of Act. Though nearly six and
>> half years has passed since Odisha Information Commission started
>> functioning , it has not made a single recommendation to remove the
>> anti-citizen and ultra vires Odisha RTI Rules 2005. Of all, the
>> Compulsory Application Form, proof of citizenship and prohibitive mode
>> of payment for application is the greatest nuisance wrought against
>> every citizen's right to information, and woefully enough, Odisha
>> Information Commission has been sleeping over it at tandem with the
>> State Government.
>> Will the Central Information Commission's latest, eye-opening warning
>> against the proof of citizenship of an RTI applicant serve as a
>> wake-up call to Odisha Information Commission for taking a similar
>> position?
>> Regards
>> Pradip Pradhan
>> M-99378-43482
>> Date-18.2.2012

Dr. Sandeep Kumar Gupta
1778, Sector 14, Hisar-125001, INDIA
Phone: 91-99929-31181

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