Appellant’s husband threatened the PIO of Delhi Bar Council, obstructed the work of CIC & abused the Information Commissioner - CIC admonished him & cautioned that any such obstruction to performance of duty by public authority would invite prosecution
1. Appellant was represented by husband Shri Narinder Singh Ahuja and father Shri Rajinder Singh Ahuja. Respondent is represented by Shri V.B.S. Sirohi.
2. The Commission vide order dated 25.09.2014 held as under:
“4. The Commission directs the PIO to forward a copy of this order along with the RTI application to PIO, Delhi Bar Council to furnish information against four points to the Appellant within three weeks of receipt of this order.
5. The Commission directs all the PIOs of Delhi Bar Council (since the date of reply of CPIO, Bar Council of India till date) to show cause as to why penalty should not be imposed upon them for not furnishing the information within the prescribed time limit. They are directed to submit their written explanation so as to reach the Commission within three weeks of receipt of this order. The PIO, Delhi Bar Council is directed to serve a copy of this order to all the then PIOs of Delhi Bar Council for compliance.”
3. Ms Tanjeet Kaur Vide her written submission dated 09.12.2014 submitted that the Bar Council of Delhi had failed to give her reply within 3 weeks from date of Order dated 25.09.2014 issued by the Commission. She stated that the BCD had replied that she had never filed a complaint against lawyer Jaswinder Kaur to which questions 15, 19, 20 and 21 pertained and was to be replied as per the Order dated 25.09.2014 within 3 weeks by BCD. She made detailed allegations against PIO and BCD saying he made a deliberate attempt to escape penalties and caused mental pain, agony and harassment to complainant/RTI applicant.
4. Father & husband of appellant made elaborate submissions. Ms. Tanjeet Kaur Ahuja, appellant has filed a complaint and then a RTI request against an advocate before Delhi Bar Council and Bar Council of India. She came with an appeal before this Commission for the information. The Commission issued show cause notice on 25.09.2014 and also directed the PIO of Delhi Bar Council to comply with the orders of FAA. The Delhi Bar Council gave pointwise reply to the appellant on 17.11.2014, saying Ms. Tanjeet Kaur Ahuja received a cheque for a sum of Rs. 60,500/- issued by Ms. Avnish Ahlawat, advocate against whom she complained. Her father also informed the Bar Council that there were no grievances left against the respondent. Accordingly, the complaint stood dismissed and withdrawn.
5. Then, appellant filed another complaint against different advocate and sought action taken report on those complaints. Bar Council of India submitted a detail response on 8th May, 2013 and filed written submission before the Commission on 16.09.2014. This was a very detailed response which should have satisfied the appellant, but it appears that she was expecting refund of fee of Rs. 17,000/ from that lawyer, Ms. Jasvinder Kaur. The appellant was alleging that Ms. Jasvinder Kaur was a guilty lawyer, guilty of breaching client – lawyer relationship.
6. As the Commission heard the submission of PIO, BCD and two representatives of appellant, perused the records and was trying to reach the conclusion, the husband of appellant, Mr. Narinder Singh Ahuja starting shouting at the top of the voice, abused and threatened the PIO of Delhi Bar Council, saying that “I will not leave you” and threatened him with dire consequences.
7. The Commission and his father-in-law Rajinder Singh Ahuja tried to control him, but Narinder Singh Ahuja was out of balance. He started abusing the Commission also. He was even demanding the Commission to book FIR to get himself arrested, if he is misbehaving. It was very difficult for the people in the room to control Mr. Narinder Singh Ahuja.
8. After sometimes, Mr. Rajinder Singh Ahuja came into the Commission’s room and apologized for the misbehavior of his son-in-law. As Mr. Narinder Singh Ahuja was threatening the CPIO Mr. V. B. S. Sirohi, the Commission made PIO to sit back inside Commission’s room for about 15-20 minutes as a precaution. Thus, Mr. Narinder Singh Ahuja has obstructed the work of Commission, threatened the CPIO of Delhi Bar Council and abused the Information Commissioner.
9. Then Mr. Narinder Singh Ahuja drafted a complaint against the Information Commissioner with lies and baseless allegations, filed before the Secretary of Central Information Commission. He made the draft in the name of his father-in-law.
10. Only ground of his second appeal was that CPIO’s response was not satisfactory.
11. The Commission found sufficient information has been given and it is beyond scope of the Commission to command Bar Council of India to secure return of fees from the advocate for the benefit of the appellant. The Commission admonishes husband of appellant for his misbehavior.
12. The Commission would like to caution the husband of appellant that any such obstruction to performance of duty by public authority would invite prosecution.
(M. Sridhar Acharyulu)
Citation: Tanjeet Kaur Ahuja v. Bar Council of India in Case No. CIC/SS/A/2013/002162SA