RTI Judgement Series
RTI Judgement Series: PIO asked to pay Rs3,000 as compensation for harassment faced by a senior citizen

A senior citizen was made to run from pillar to post for refusing to pay a bribe of Rs20 for obtaining his service book. The CIC directed the PIO to pay a compensation for the harassment faced by the appellant. This is the 89th in a series of important judgements given by former Central Information Commissioner Shailesh Gandhi that can be used or quoted in an RTI application

 
The Central Information Commission (CIC), while allowing an appeal from a senior citizen, directed the Public Information Officer (PIO) of the engineering department at Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) to furnish information and pay Rs3,000 as compensation to the appellant for the loss and detriment suffered by him.
 
While giving this judgement on 20 April 2011, Shailesh Gandhi, the then Central Information Commissioner said, “It is a very sad comment that an organization makes a senior citizen run around like a beggar to get his dues and nobody has the sensitivity to ensure that his legitimate requirements are met. In view of the clear harassment faced by the appellant, the PIO is also directed to ensure that a cheque of Rs3,000 as compensation is sent to the appellant before 15 June 2011.”
 
New Delhi resident OP Singhal, on 2 July 2010, sought certain information regarding preparation of a duplicate service book from the PIO of engineering department at MCD under the Right to Information (RTI) Act. Here is the information he sought.
 
(i) Re-construction of duplicate service book.
(ii) Payment of arrears.
 
The PIO in his reply stated that “It is informed that the reply of your RTI application has already been given to you vide letter no. HC/ RTI/ Engg./ HQ/ 2010/ 497 dated 19 July 2010”.
 
Not satisfied with the reply, Singhal then filed his first appeal. In his order, the First Appellate Authority (FAA) said, “During the hearing the matter was discussed and the applicant insisted for the quick preparation of duplicate service book. Accordingly, PIO/ ADC (Engg) is directed to pursue the case and give proper reply to point no. 4 as the applicant was satisfied with the rest of the points."
 
Singhal, again not satisfied with the reply, approached the CIC with his second appeal.
 
During the hearing, Mr Gandhi, the then CIC, noted that the appellant (Singhal) was a 75-year old and seeking information about when his duplicate service book would be made. The PIO admitted before the Commission, that Singhal’s service book was claimed to have been lost by the Pension Cell of MCD.
 
Singhal stated that he visited the pension cell of MCD requesting it to send his file to Kasturba Hospital for payment of arrears in May 2003. He also claimed that one Naresh Kumar, record keeper at the pension cell, asked him to pay Rs20 as bribe, which he refused. Singhal also alleged that after his refusal to pay bribe, his service book was “claimed to have been lost” by the pension cell.
 
In 2007, Singhal filed a complaint with the Commissioner of MCD and has been running from pillar to post to get his service book located. He finally applied on 2 July 2010 to get his duplicate service book made and through RTI asked about the progress of getting the service book made. 
 
After hearing the plight of the senior citizen, Mr Gandhi said, “It is a very sad comment that an organization makes a senior citizen run around like a beggar to get his dues and nobody has the sensitivity to ensure that his legitimate requirements are met. The current employees do not seem to realize that they could be placed with the same prospects at some future date.”
 
To this, the PIO stated that the pension cell was not cooperating and was not providing information. 
 
Mr Gandhi, then directed the PIO to obtain the information from the pension cell and provide it to Singhal before 10 May 2011. The Commission using power under Section 19(8)(b) of the RTI Act, also asked the PIO pay Rs3,000 to Singhal for the loss and detriment suffered by him since he has not obtained the information so far. 
 
 
CENTRAL INFORMATION COMMISSION
 
Decision No. CIC/SG/A/2011/000292/12068
Appeal No. CIC/SG/A/2011/000292
 
Appellant                         :     OP Singhal
                                                  New Delhi- 110064
 
Respondent                      :     SS Rana 
                                                  Public Information Officer & ADC (Engineering)
                                                  Municipal Corporation of Delhi
                                                  O/o Addl. Dy. Commissioner,
                                                  Engineering Dept (HQ),
                                                  9th Floor, Dr. SPM Civic Centre, 
                                                  Minto Road, New Delhi
 

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COMMENTS

hasmukh

4 years ago

These are some of the evils of bureaucracy. The Govt. staff is appointed to administer the law and help / guide the people. But many of them harass the people and seek money for doing the work which is part of their duty.
It is good that the senior citizen got justice in this case as his plight was appreciated / understood by the CIC.

Domestic car sales skid 10.43% in April; bikes slip 2.06%

Total sale of vehicles across categories registered a decline of 0.34% to 14,67,492 units in April 2013 against 14,72,452 units in the same month of 2012, according to the data released by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers

 
Domestic passenger car sales declined by 10.43% to 1,50,789 units in April this year compared to 1,68,354 units in the same month of 2012.
 
According to the data released by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), motorcycle sales in last month declined by 2.06% to 8,43,889 units from 8,61,608 units in the same month previous year.
 
On the other hand, total two-wheeler sales in April 2013 grew by 0.95% to 11,68,080 units from 11,57,114 units in the same period of previous year.
 
Total sales of commercial vehicles grew by 0.75% to 56,678 units from 56,257 units in the year-ago period, SIAM said.
 
Total sale of vehicles across categories registered a decline of 0.34% to 14,67,492 units in April 2013 against 14,72,452 units in the same month of 2012, it added.

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Air passengers to pay more for baggage weighing over 15 kg

The move comes days after the Directorate General of Civil Aviation allowed airlines to charge fees for “unbundled services” like check-in baggage, preferential seats, meals, snacks or drink (barring drinking water) and sports and musical instruments on their domestic flights

 
Flying will become costlier from next week if you are carrying baggage weighing more than 15 kg with major airlines deciding to impose a levy of Rs250 per additional kg and considering charging more for preferential seating.
 
After Air India, private full service carrier Jet Airways on Thursday announced revision of free baggage allowance to 15 kg in economy class from 20 kg on its flights and that of its all economy arm Jet Konnect.
 
The new charge will come into effect from 15th May, Jet Airways said.
 
However, the JetPrivilege (JP) members would continue to enjoy the additional free baggage allowance as per their JP membership status, while Premiere (business class) guests would continue to avail 30 kg of free baggage allowance on Jet Airways and JetKonnect flights, it added.
 
The airline has left the permissible weight of cabin baggage to seven kg, as before.
 
The move came days after the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) allowed airlines to charge fees for “unbundled services” like check-in baggage, preferential seats, meals, snacks or drink (barring drinking water) and sports and musical instruments on their domestic flights.
 
Earlier, Air India had announced lowering of free baggage allowance from 20 to 15 kg on the domestic sector from 19th May.
 
The national carrier had on Monday last decided to charge a flat rate of about Rs200-Rs250 per kg on excess weight. The excess baggage charges beyond 20 kg currently vary between Rs150-Rs400 per kg depending upon the sector.
 
The airline is also contemplating levying charges for preferred seats like front rows, emergency exit seats, where leg space is more and window and aisle seats.
 
Meanwhile, low cost carrier IndiGo has decided to charge a premium from the fliers for pre-booking a preferential seat in domestic and international flights.
 
The airline would charge the passenger a premium of Rs500 for sitting in first two rows or near emergency exits in 12 and 13th row on a domestic flight and Rs800 for an international flight under its Indigo Seat Plus plan.
 
Though, IndiGo, has not indicated from when it would start charging the new rates, in a circular to travel agents it said for all other window and aisle seats, which are pre-selected, a passenger would be charged Rs200 for domestic and Rs300 for international flights.
 
While pre-booking of all other middle seats would cost Rs100 on a domestic and Rs200 on international flights.
 

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COMMENTS

anantha ramdas

4 years ago

This unilateral increase by the airlines, aided by the Civil Aviation Ministry is against the interest of the travelling public.

What happens if the pax is going on a two day trip and carries cabin baggage (current free allowance is 7 kg) which is say 10 kg and no other check in baggage?

I have seen pax checking in (to the brim i.e. 20 kg+) still carry a cabin baggage plus computer. Neither the checkin clerk or the security stops them.


I do not know if we have a Passanger Association in operation and strong enough to lodge a protest by simply calling for a strike against such unfair practices. Hope some reader, who is a lawyer, can look up the law and prevent such move by the airlines!

arun adalja

4 years ago

this is nothing but making money in a different way and service nil.a person coming from abroad and going to native place by domestic flight must be exampted from this rule as foreing airlines allows 25 to 30 kgs.i think no clarifications on this issue.why different pricings?airlines changing price everyday and in some cases no refund.why such harassment?

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