RTI Judgement Series
RTI Judgement Series: When 1,500 files out of 2,000 are stolen in Delhi

The PIO admitted that out of the 2,000 tehbazaris in the City Zone in Delhi, 1,500 files have been stolen. The CIC directed the PIO to publish a list of tehbazaris and file a police complaint. This is the 195th in a series of important RTI judgements given by former Central Information Commissioner Shailesh Gandhi

The Central Information Commission (CIC), while allowing an appeal, directed the Public Information Officers (PIOs) of City Zone and Civil Zone at Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) to give complete list of tehbazaris indicating the files which have been stolen and also publish the list on MCD website.


During the hearing before the CIC under the Right to Information (RTI) Act, the PIO admitted that out of the 2,000 tehbazaris in the City Zone, 1,500 files have been stolen.


While giving the judgement on 14 September 2009, Shailesh Gandhi, the then Central Information Commissioner said, "About 1,500 files have been stolen. This is indeed a scandalous state of affairs. The two PIOs of City Zone and Civil Line are directed to give the complete list of tehbazaris indicating the files which have been stolen to the Appellant before 30 September 2009. These lists will also be displayed on the website of MCD."


Delhi resident, JD Kataria, on 18 March 2009, sought from the PIO information regarding tehbazaris/hawking in Delhi.


He wanted to know...

1. How many tehbazaris were allotted between 1990 and 2009 and asked the list of the same


2. To whom it was allotted, whether any inspection was carried out before allotting tehbazaris, whether the original allottee still owns the tehbazaris, whether any order has been issued to tehbazaris owners to fix shutter in their shops and copy of the same order with the name of the authority who issued such order, details of the action taken by the tehbazaris owners on the order, whether any shop owners has been challaned, details of space allotted by Corporation, whether the allottee stills owns the same space, whether the Corporation has floated any draw and if any officer was present there, if so then name and designation of the officer, copy of the report of the draw, details of the raid which was conducted in February 2009 with details of seized goods, revenue generated by the Govt., whether any officers inform the shop owners about the raid to be conducted, name of the zone inspector and RC with the details of time since they had been appointment, whether they have not been transferred due to any political connections, details of their residence, whether they resides in private accommodation or given by the Corporation, details of action taken by the department on tehbazaris with the report and whether any shop owners can rent out to others


The PIO on 27 May 2009 transferred Kataria's RTI application to superintendent engineer at City Zone. Since, the applicant did not receive any information from the PIO, he filed his first appeal.


In his order, the First Appellate Authority (FAA) directed the PIO (SE/City Zone) and AC (City Zone) to provide the information to Kataria within 15 days.


However, no information was provided by the PIO. Citing non-compliance of FAA's order by the PIO, the appellant then approached the CIC with his second appeal.


During the hearing the Bench of Mr Gandhi, noted that the appellant had filed RTI application enquiring about the number of tehbazaris on Hamilton Road in Kashmere Gate. He had also asked for other queries regarding this.


However, since Kataria, the appellant, did not make the payment properly, he was asked to pay cash as application fee, which he did on 22 May 2009. After receiving the fee, The PIO of City Zone transferred the application on 27 May 2009 to the Civil Line zone since the roads fall in Civil Line Zone.


The PIO RP Aggarwal admitted that there were about 2,000 tehbazaris in the City Zone. About 1,500 files have been stolen.


Mr Gandhi said, "This was indeed a scandalous state of affairs."


While allowing the appeal, the Bench directed the PIOs of City Zone and Civil Zone to put up a list of all the tehbazaris on the website of the MCD indicating whether the files are available or stolen. Mr Gandhi also asked the PIOs to file a police complaint for the theft of the missing files.




Decision No. CIC/SG/A/2009/001770 & 1780/4793


Appeal No. CIC/SG/A/2009/001770


Appellant                                            : JD Kataria

                                                            Delhi - 110006.


Respondent 1                                     : Public Information Officer &

                                                            Superintending Engineer

                                                            Municipal Corporation of Delhi

                                                            O/o the SE, City Zone,

                                                            MLUG Car Parking, Asaf Ali Road,

                                                            New Delhi - 110002


Respondent 2                                     : Public Information Officer &

                                                            Assistant Commissioner

                                                            Municipal Corporation of Delhi

                                                            O/o the AC, City Zone,

                                                            MLUG Car Parking, Asaf Ali Road,

                                                            New Delhi - 110002


Mayawati, CBI gets notice from Supreme Court on plea to lodge fresh FIR

Indirectly referring to its 2012 verdict by which it had quashed the DA case against Mayawati merely on technical grounds the Supreme Court said that CBI should have got proper advice and acted on that basis

The Supreme Court on Friday issued a notice to Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati and Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on a plea for registration of a fresh first information report (FIR) against BSP supremo. This notice was issued more than one-and-a-half years after the apex court quashed the disproportionate assets (DA) case against Mayawati.


A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice P Sathasivamm while holding that CBI should have got proper advice for registration of a fresh case against her after the apex court quashed the FIR on technical ground, sought response from the former chief minister of Uttar Pradesh (UP) and the agency within four weeks.


The bench brushed aside the stiff opposition put forward by senior advocate and BSP member Satish Mishra who opposed the plea, saying it is politically motivated.


"We expected that CBI should have got proper advice and acted on that basis," the bench said, indirectly referring to its 2012 verdict by which it had quashed the DA case against Mayawati merely on technical grounds and leaving the option open to the agency to lodge a fresh case against her.


"It is not for the court to pass order on every aspect," the bench said.


"Is it always the duty of the court to direct CBI," the court asked.


By its July 2012 verdict, the court had quashed a nine-year-long DA case against Mayawati on the ground the agency proceeded against her without properly understanding its 2003 orders which were confined to the Taj Corridor case relating to release of Rs 17 crore by UP government allegedly without sanction.


Thereafter, in May 2013, while reserving its decision on a plea seeking review of its July 2012 judgement, the apex court had clarified that its earlier verdict has not taken away CBI's power to proceed against her in a separate DA case.


On 8 August 2013, the apex court had declined to review its judgement quashing the DA case against her.


Understanding the role of dividends for investment decisions

Reinvesting dividends makes sense if the requirement of money is not immediate, and dividend should be used for liquidity management

The extra-ordinary dividend of Rs29 per share announced by Coal India has brought the word, ‘dividend’ to limelight once again. This is not for the first that time dividend has hogged headlines. Recently, Strides Arcolab issued dividends, which looked like a company winding up its operations and distributing the entire money to shareholders.
The Strides Arcolab announced Rs500 per share dividend. Investors have often chased high dividend yield shares. Historically, much has been written about dividends and its significance under different approaches, from dividend discount model to Miller-Modigliani approach.

So what does dividend mean for investors and how should investors analyse dividend in the process of investing?

The first step in understanding dividend is to understand the dividend policy of a company. The dividend policy will help an investor get an idea about what kind of dividend he should expect from the company. While every company many not have a well documented dividend policy, many investor-friendly company have these policies in place and an investor must go through this policy to understand what to expect from the company. Even in cases where a company does not have a well drafted dividend policy, past trends can give a good indication of what to expect from the company. Here are details of some companies which have a well drafted dividend policy.

Name of the Company

Dividend Policy

Profit making Public Sector Undertaking

As per the guideline dated February 11, 1998 from the Government of India, all profit-making PSUs which are essentially commercial enterprises should declare the higher of a minimum dividend of 20% on equity or a minimum dividend payout of 20% of post-tax profit. The minimum dividend pay-out in respect of enterprises in the oil, petroleum, chemical and other infrastructure sectors such as us should be 30% of post-tax profits.


HDFC Bank has had a dividend policy that balances the dual objectives of appropriately rewarding shareholders through dividends and retaining capital in order to maintain a healthy capital adequacy ratio to support future growth. It has had a consistent track record of moderate but steady increases in dividend declarations over its history with the dividend payout ratio ranging between 20% and 25%.

Infosys Ltd.

Currently, Infosys pays dividends to its shareholders. The current dividend policy is to distribute not more than 30% of the PAT (consolidated Indian GAAP) as dividend. The Board of Directors reviews the dividend policy periodically and on 15 April 2008 decided to hike the dividend policy to up to 30% of post-tax profits from 20% of post-tax profits earlier


CRISIL believes in maintaining a fair balance between cash retention and dividend distribution. Cash retention is required to finance acquisitions and future growth, and also as a means to meet any unforeseen contingency. CRISIL has also been conscious of the need to maintain stability in its dividend payout over the years. From 2008, CRISIL has commenced the practice of paying dividend on a quarterly basis.

Larsen and Toubro

The board of directors reviews the dividend policy periodically. L&T pays a dividend because the company’s investors in India and abroad view this as an important market signal of the management’s confidence in the future.

Source: Websites of respective companies

After having understood the dividend policy, an investor needs to understand how the dividend decision of a company impacts its share price. Very often, after an extra-ordinary dividend is announced, the concerned company’s share prices tend to go up after the announcement. Coal India shares experienced this. While this may not hold true in all cases, a company surprising investors with dividend on positive side tend to add value for investors in share price in many cases. Some of the theoretical approaches on the significance of the dividend confirm the positive influence of dividend on share price. MJ Gordon, in his dividend discount model (also known as Gordon growth model) believes that paying large dividends reduces risk and thus influence stock price, while another analyst Baskin (Baskin, 1989) says dividend is a proxy for the future earnings. An investor also needs to pay attention to dividend yield which is a relationship between dividend per share and the price of the share. Here also an occasional high dividend yield may not serve much purpose and consistency once again is the key.

Another important aspect that an investor needs to understand is where to deploy dividend proceeds. Ideally dividend can be utilized for meeting working capital requirement of one’s life. While reinvesting dividend makes sense if the requirement of money is not immediate, dividend should be used for liquidity management by an individual. In case of companies which have well drafted dividend policy, cash flow from dividend is relatively stable and helps in financial planning process. Along with other intermittent cash flows such as coupon or bank interest, an investor can combine money received from dividend to plan his finances well.

(Vivek Sharma has worked for 17 years in the stock market, debt market and banking. He is a post graduate in Economics and MBA in Finance. He writes on personal finance and economics and is invited as an expert on personal finance shows.)


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