Appellant sought a copy of attestation form submitted by Shri Sanjay, at the time of his appointment as security officer alleging illegality in appointment - CIC: Information is exempt from disclosure u/s 8(1)(j) of the RTI Act, 2005
1. Shri A.K. Gupta, the appellant, sought the copy of the letter written by the Institute to ICAR on vigilance clearance for grant of grade pay of 4800/- to Shri Sanjay; copy of the letter relating to vigilance clearance received by the Institute from ICAR; copy of the recommendation of the DPC for promotion of Shri Sanjay to the grade pay of 4800/- ; copy of the order given to Shri Sanjay, notifying the increased grade pay of Rs. 4800/-; copy of the attestation form submitted by Shri Sanjay; etc., through seven points.
2. The Central Public Information Officer’s (CPIO) gave a point wise response to the appellant’s RTI application and further informed the appellant that no information could be provided to him on point 6 of his application relating to copy of attestation form of Shri Sanjay as no public interest was involved in the matter. The appellant, being dissatisfied with the CPIO’s response, approached the First Appellate Authority (FAA) stating that Shri Sanjay had been illegally appointed to a public office and therefore, complete disclosure ought to be made in the matter. The appellant, therefore, requested the FAA to direct the CPIO to provide information on point 6 to the appellant. The FAA does not appear to have adjudicated in the matter. Aggrieved, the appellant came in appeal before the Commission reiterating his request for providing the copy of attestation form submitted by Shri Sanjay and to award compensation to the appellant for the mental agony and pain caused to him by the PIO.
3. The matter was heard by the Commission. The appellant submitted that Shri Sanjay had been illegally appointed as Security Officer and therefore, he had sought the copy of attestation form submitted by Shri Sanjay, at the time of his appointment, to the Institute under point 6 of the RTI application. The appellant added that the CPIO refused to provide the desired document to him when, in fact all file notings relating to Shri Sanjay had been provided earlier.
4. The respondent submitted that the appellant had sought personal information of third party disclosure of which was denied by the CPIO as the appellant did not establish any larger public interest in the matter. Moreover, the appellant’s first appeal was not received by the Institute otherwise, the CPIO would have followed the third party procedure prescribed u/s 11 of the RTI Act, 2005, seeking consent of Shri Sanjay for providing the requisite information to the appellant.
5. On hearing both the parties and perusing the available records, the Commission observes that the CPIO has appropriately responded in the matter and provided the available and disclosable information, as per the records, to the appellant. The Commission further observes that the appellant had sought personal information of third party under point 6 of his RTI application i.e., the copy of attestation form submitted by Shri Sanjay to the Institute which was exempt from disclosure u/s 8(1)(j) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, there shall be no obligation to give any citizen, information which relates to personal information the disclosure of which has no relationship to any public activity or interest, or which would cause unwarranted invasion of the privacy of the individual unless the Central Public Information Officer or the State Public Information Officer or the appellate authority, as the case may be, is satisfied that the larger public interest justifies the disclosure of such information: Provided that the information which cannot be denied to the Parliament or a State Legislature shall not be denied to any person. of the RTI Act, 2005. The appellant also could not establish any larger public interest involved in the matter, to the satisfaction of the Commission.
The appeal is disposed of.
Citation: Shri A.K. Gupta v. Indian Veterinary Research Institute Indian Veterinary Research Institute in Appeal No. CIC/IVTRI/A/2017/176754/MP, Date of Decision : September 29, 2017