Citizens' Issues
CIC’s order fails to yield any results from DoPT even after 8 months

The RTI activist was told about a stay from the High Court after eight months of his appeal being withheld

The government has attempted to stonewall the Right to Information (RTI) Act yet again. Surprisingly, the RTI activist, who had filed an application, has been informed that the authorities will not disclose information he sought, almost eight months after the Chief Information Commissioner (CIC) ruled in his favour. Moreover, the CIC has informed him that the government authorities have obtained a High Court stay on disclosure of information, but the mail he received does not contain copy of the stay order.

RTI activist, Subhash Chandra Agrawal, said, “The CIC issued an order on 29th March, which said that I will be provided all the information within 10 days. Nothing happened for long, and just a couple of days ago, I was told that a stay has been obtained on disclosure. But the documents that I received do not contain any stay order, there is only the copy of the writ petition asking for the stay.”

Mr Agrawal has approached the CIC for taking up the matter with the public authorities; namely, Union Cabinet secretariat and Department of Personnel & Training (DoPT). He said, “The CIC, on 29th October directed that all information be provided within 10 days. But so far none of the public authorities have cared to provide the information sought.”

Seeking information regarding transfer of Bhupider Prasad, secretary to department of justice and posting of Neela Gangadharan in the same position back in April 2010, Mr Agrawal fined an RTI application. While the public information officer (PIO) provided some information, he refused to disclose file notings and correspondence notes. Mr Agrawal filed appeals, where, the CPIO reiterated that such information is exempted from the purview of the RTI Act.

Finally, the CIC Satyananda Mishra quashed the CPIO’s claims of exemption, and ordered that all information be provided within 10 days. The hearing took place on 29 March 2011; but the public authorities concerned, namely the DoPT and the Union Cabinet secretariat made no attempt to provide any information.

“Whenever I called the departments, they would say that they were ‘thinking’ of approaching the Delhi High Court for a stay. But then, the authorities must approach the court within 30 days of the order being issued,” Mr Agrawal said.

He then approached the CIC again, asking for taking the matter up with the public authorities. However, three days ago, he received a reply from the CIC, which said that a stay has been obtained against its order.

The documents, Mr Agrawal received, however, do not contain copy of the stay order. There is a copy of the writ petition that the DoPT had filed in the Delhi High Court on 18 August, 2011 asking for a stay. It pleaded that the ‘impugned judgment (of the CIC) is erroneous, illegal and contrary to the intent and purposes of RTI Act.’

It said that Cabinet papers are exempt from disclosure, and that the public authorities are ‘not under obligation’ to disclose information that fall under the exemptions listed from Section 8(a) to 8(j) of RTI Act.

Mr Agrawal said, “I have an appointment with the CIC shortly, and I will ask them about this. I would like to see the stay order too. I feel that there is no reason for not giving the information.”

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COMMENTS

PRAVEEN SAKHUJA

5 years ago

It is government authorities which riggle the law but require others to stick to it and implement. WHY DoPT is afraid of providing the information such cases prompt other authorities also to sit on the orders of CIC and CIC also scums to its illegal demands.

Maintenance work at Kudunkulam plant on: Govt

Minister of state in the Prime Minister’s Office V Narayanasamy said the work on the first reactor was over but its commissioning slated for next month had been delayed by ‘some months’ due to the agitation by the locals, who are demanding the scrapping of the project raising safety concerns

Chennai: Construction work at the controversial Kudunkulam nuclear power plant has been stopped but essential maintenance activities are underway, reports PTI quoting minister of state in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) V Narayanasamy.

He said the work on the first reactor was over but its commissioning slated for next month had been delayed by ‘some months’ due to the agitation by the locals, who are demanding the scrapping of the project raising safety concerns.

“Construction work at the plant has been stopped... but since maintenance work is important, our scientists and engineers are taking up the work. We have told the chief minister (Jayalalithaa) that maintenance work should be done and she has also accepted it,” he told reporters here.

Mr Narayanasamy said the Centre had accepted the Tamil Nadu Cabinet resolution and stopped the construction work besides setting up an experts committee to allay the fears of locals.

He said the committees set by the Centre as well as by the state government discussed various issues in their first meeting held in Thirunelveli earlier this week and replies to the questionnaires given by the representatives of the agitators were being prepared.

“The committee representatives are educating the people.

They will remove their fears... The talks between the two are going on very smoothly and I hope that in the next meeting all the issues will be resolved... There is every possibility of commissioning the plant in near future,” he said.

Mr Narayansamy, who was deputed by the prime minister at the height of the first phase agitation in September to pacify them, said there had been a marked change in the attitude of the people of the state, especially from Kudunkulam and were now supporting the plant.

“Some news channels who did surveys also found that the majority of the people are in favour of commissioning of the plant. I am sure that the agitating groups will see reason and will come up to the expectations of the people,” he said.

Referring to the visit of former president APJ Abdul Kalam to Kudunkulam on Sunday last, he said after seeing the plant himself he had given a ‘certificate’ vouching for its safety.

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Mahindra Satyam posts 10-fold growth in Q2 PAT to Rs238 crore

Commenting on the results, chairman Vineet Nayar said, “Our growth momentum continues for the fifth consecutive quarter. As we come toward the end of our three year transformation journey, it is indeed satisfying to see that all our key business performance indicators, such as growth, profitability and talent retention, are on course

Hyderabad: IT major Mahindra Satyam today posted a 10-fold growth in profit after tax to Rs238 crore for the second quarter of the 2011-12 financial year compared to Rs23.31 crore in the July-September quarter of the 2010-11 fiscal, reports PTI.

On a quarter-on-quarter (Q-o-Q) basis, Mahindra Satyam’s profit-after-tax was up 5.77% from Rs225 crore in Q1, FY11-12.

The company’s consolidated revenues surged by 27.01% during the quarter under review to Rs1,578 crore from Rs1,242.4 crore in the corresponding period a year ago.

On a Q-o-Q basis, Q2 revenues were up 10.04% from Rs1,433.93 crore in the first quarter of the 2011-12 financial year.

Commenting on the results, chairman Vineet Nayar said, “Our growth momentum continues for the fifth consecutive quarter. As we come toward the end of our three year transformation journey, it is indeed satisfying to see that all our key business performance indicators, such as growth, profitability and talent retention, are on course.”

“We have shown significant improvement quarter-on-quarter in spite of an uncertain macroeconomic environment,” he added.

The company added 36 new customers during the quarter.

The total headcount of the company stood at 32,092 as of the quarter ended 30th September, during which net addition of 654 personnel took place. Attrition stood at 15.6% during the quarter.

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