Appeal filed by RK Jain for disclosure of ACR under RTI dismissed by the High Court
The appellant wanted information about certain alleged adverse entries in the ACR (now APAR) of the then member of the CESTAT, Ms. Jyoti Balasundram by the then president of the CESTAT in the year 2000-01 and the follow up action taken.
There were certain complaints qua corruption against Ms. Jyoti Balasundaram, and after examining these complaints, the then President of CESTAT who was the former Chief Justice of High Court made certain adverse entries in the ACR of the said Member pertaining to the year 2000-01. According to RK Jain, on the basis of the said ACR, the Department of Revenue in the Ministry of Finance opened another file with the subject “follow up action on the integrity in the ACR for the year 2000-01 in respect of Ms. Jyoti Balsundaram, Member (Tech.) Cestat”. Ultimately, the file was closed without any proper action. The appellant, on this premise wanted the inspection of the file as well as copies of the Notesheet and correspondence pages of the plaintiff File no 27/3/2002-AD.IC
The single bench of the High Court had earlier sent the matter back to the Central Information Commission (CIC) holding that the information sought for is “third party information” wherein the third party may plead privacy as defence. The proper question would be as to whether divulging such an information is in public interest or not. Therefore, the matter was remitted back to the CIC to consider this issue after following the procedure prescribed in section 11 of the RTI Act and then decide the matter.
An appeal was filed against the single bench order which has now been dismissed upholding the order of the single bench.
[Citation : RK Jain versus UOI and another in LPA NO. 22 The provisions of this Act shall have effect notwithstanding anything inconsistent therewith contained in the Official Secrets Act, 1923 (19 of 1923), and any other law for the time being in force or in any instrument having effect by virtue of any law other than this Act. OF 2012]