RTI Judgement Series: Transport department asked to upload all manuals under Section 4
Moneylife Digital Team 15 October 2013

The CIC directed the Transport Department in Delhi to upload all manuals required under Section 4 of the RTI Act and make available hard copies with its field officers. This is the 184th 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, said that the Public Information Officer (PIO) and Joint Commissioner at Transport Department in New Delhi must ensure that all the information required to be published on its website as per Section 4 of the Right to Information (RTI) Act.


While giving the judgement on 28 May 2009, Shailesh Gandhi, the then Central Information Commissioner said, "The PIO had assured the Bench that by 15 June 2009 the all the Section 4 manuals will be uploaded at the website. The manuals must be available in hardcopies before 30 June 2009 at all the field offices."


New Delhi resident Rakesh Agarwal, on 3 October 2008, sought from the PIO information regarding meeting of Joint Commissioners on 27 August 2008 and manuals uploaded. Here is the information he sought...


1. A copy of the minutes of the meeting (Joint Commissioner-Ops) on 27.08.2008)

2.           (a) The date on which the existing 17 manuals were uploaded

               (b) A copy of the latest 17 "correct and comprehensive" manuals

(c) The names, addresses and other available information about all recipients of TSR permits as available on your record

                (d) The process followed for maintaining and keeping the manuals updated

                (e) Name & designation of the person responsible for maintaining the manuals

(f) All methods adopted by you for dissemination of information as per section 4(3) and 4(4) of the RTI Act

                (g) Facilities available at your various offices for accessing information

3. Concerning website, therefore, please provide me the following information:

               (a) The process followed for maintaining and keeping the website updated

               (b) Name & designation of the person responsible for maintaining the website


In his reply the PIO stated...


"The matter pertains to Computer Branch and Sect. Branch, accordingly, a report has been called from Computer Branch & Sect Branch. The report as received from computer branch & Sect. Branch on 18.11.2008 and 26.11.2008 respectively is enclosed herewith.


As regard information in respect of 2(f) & (g) the requisite information is given below:-

2(f). As per section 4(3) & 4(4) of RTI Act, 2005 every information shall be disseminated widely and in such form and manner which is easily accessible to public. As the rules are being followed and important notices/information are being made to public through news papers and notice board as well as posted on web-site of transport department.

          2(g) Information are available on notice board at zonal offices.


This disposes off your application dt 06.10.2008."


There was no mention of any order passed by the First Appellate Authority (FAA). Agarwal, the appellant, then approached the CIC with his second appeal.


During the hearing Mr Gandhi, the then CIC, observed that complainant has very validly pointed out that section 4 compliance of the public authority is very poor. The Bench, with the help of the PIO, tried to access the Section 4 manuals of the department on the website and discovered that the webpage was not opening.


The PIO states that "Section 4 has been complied by the department and all the 17 manuals were available in the department's website which has now become non-operational due to the decision of the IT department. The department of information technology of the Government of Delhi has vide their letter dated 28 March 2009 communicated to the transport department that the website of the transport department would be made non-operational and that the contents of the transport department's website would be uploaded in the website of the Delhi Government i.e. www.delhi.gov.in . The latest position was enquired from the IT Department yesterday i.e. on 27 May 2009 and also today i.e. 25 May 2009. The IT Department informed that the website has been updated and the updated version is under preparation/modification presently."


The PIO assured the CIC that by 15 June 2009 the all the Section 4 manuals will be uploaded at the website. Mr Gandhi also directed that the manuals must be available in hardcopies before 30 June 2009 at all the field offices.


Agarwal, the complainant, stated that he had been trying to access the website for the last six months and found that many of the manual are not available on the website and the website contains many errors on different pages of the website.


The Bench pointed out that to the public authority that responsibility of making the section manuals and making them available to the citizens was meant to the implemented latest by 12 October 2005. "The public authority must at least now ensure that this is done and the process by which updation will be done should also be declared transparently," Mr Gandhi said in his order.




Decision No. CIC/SG/A/2009/000754/3467


Appeal No. CIC/SG/A/2009/000754


Appellant                                          : Rakesh Agarwal

                                                            Patparganj, New Delhi-110092


Respondent                                       : PIO,

                                                            Joint Commissioner (Ops)

                                                            Transport Department

                                                            5/9 Underhill Road,

                                                            New Delhi-110054

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