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Don’t destroy documents till disclosure is decided: CIC

The chief information commissioner has said that if there is a case pending under the RTI Act then the documents should not be destroyed till a final decision is taken on the disclosure

The chief information commissioner (CIC) has directed the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) not to destroy documents, whose disclosure is yet to be decided by it, even if there is a policy of disposing them after a specified period, reports PTI.

CIC Wajahat Habibullah said during a hearing that the documents sought by Right to Information (RTI) applicants should not be destroyed till a decision is made on their disclosure.

The case is related to Maj Gen (Retd) VK Singh who, through his RTI application in 2008, wanted to know from the CVC the status of his complaint highlighting the alleged corruption in the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW).

The CVC said in its reply that his complaint was “filed” and no file notings were available.

Author a book ‘India's External Intelligence: Secrets of Research and Analysis Wing’, Mr Singh said it is not possible that no records of deliberations over the complaint were available and submitted before the Commission and that he wanted to inspect the records.

The CVC representative at the hearing before the transparency panel said yesterday that it may be possible that records may have been destroyed as the Commission has a policy to destroy records of “filed” complaints which are more than a year old. Hence, inspection may not be possible.

The CVC representative said that she would check the status and inform Mr Singh about it.

Mr Habibullah said, “If there is a case pending under the RTI Act then the documents should not be destroyed till a final decision is taken on the disclosure.”

Mr Singh, who alleged several instances of corruption in India’s external intelligence agency RAW in his book, has been facing trial for alleged violation of the Official Secrets Act.
 

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Core infra sector grows by 7.2% in March

The key sectors—crude, petroleum refinery products, coal, electricity, cement and finished steel—also showed marked improvement in March over the month-ago period

Six core infrastructure industries grew by a healthy 7.2% in March against 3.3% in the year-ago period, reflecting firm industrial recovery, reports PTI.

The key sectors—crude, petroleum refinery products, coal, electricity, cement and finished steel—also showed marked improvement in March when compared to the 4.7% growth in February.

Finished steel with 9.2% expansion led the recovery, reversing a negative 1.8% in March last year.

Coal, electricity and cement grew by 7.8% each against 5.3%, 6.3% and 10.1%, respectively, over last year.

Crude oil production went up by 3.5% from a negative 2.3%. However, petroleum refinery products showed a dismal performance with 0.4% contraction in March 2010 over a positive 3.3% growth a year ago.

For the financial year 2009-10, the core sectors which have 26.7% combined weightage in the overall industrial production, registered a growth of 5.5% in April-March 2009-10 against 3% in the same period last year, an official statement said today.
 

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