Appellant sought to know the circumstances under which Grade Pay (GP) of Rs. 5400 was not accepted for the Group ‘B’ Officers of Defence Accounts Dept - PIO: copy of OM provided which says that it was as per reference made by MoD - CIC: no further action
Shri D.D. Saini, the appellant, has filed the present appeal dated 29.9.2011 before the Commission against the respondent Department of Personnel & Training (DoPT), New Delhi for not providing complete and satisfactory information in response to his RTI application dated 31.5.2011. The appellant was absent during the hearing whereas the respondent were represented by Shri Parminder Singh, US, DoPT, Shri Sanjiv Bajaj, Accounts Officer, Shri N.S. Sharma, US/CPIO, Ministry of Defence, Shri Manoj Kumar, Under Secretary, Deptt. of Expenditure, Shri S.M. Gupta, US/CPIO, Deptt. of Expenditure.
2. The appellant through his RTI application dated 31.5.2011, addressed to CPIO, DoPT, Department of Expenditure and Office of the Controller General of Defence Accounts, sought information on ten queries pertaining to anomaly in fixation of pay in respect of Group ‘B’ Officers of Accounts Service on completion of four years service. The appellant seeks to know the circumstances under which Grade Pay (GP) of Rs. 5400 was not accepted for the Group ‘B’ Officers of the Defence Accounts Department. The CPIO, DoPT vide letter No. 15/2/2011- CS.1(A) dated 21.6.2011 replied to the appellant informing him that CS. I Section dealt with the grade of Assistant of CSS and is concerned only with point No. (vi) of the RTI application. However, the points raised by the appellant are interrogatory in nature and as per the provisions u/s 2(f) “information” means any material in any form, including records, documents, memos, e-mails, opinions, advices, press releases, circulars, orders, logbooks, contracts, reports, papers, samples, models, data material held in any electronic form and information relating to any private body which can be accessed by a public authority under any other law for the time being in force; of the RTI Act, the appellant should not make an attempt to elicit views of the CPIO. The CPIO can only provide information which is available in any material form. However, the CPIO informed, as per D/O Expenditure O.M. dated 16.11.2009, it has been decided to extend the pay structure of GP of Rs. 4600/- in the pay band PB2 to Assistants belonging to CSS, Armed Forces Hqr. Service, Indian Foreign Service ‘B’ and Railway Board Secretariat Service and Personal Assistants in their counterpart Stenographers’ service w.e.f. 1.1.2006. This has been circulated by the Department vide O.M. No. 7/7/2008-CS.I(A) dated 21.12.2009. The manner of fixation of pay has been suggested by D/O Expenditure which has been circulated by DoPT vide O.M. dated 22.12.2010. The CPIO also endorsed a copy of reply to the CPIO, Department of Expenditure w.r.t. his communication No. 12(104)/2011-RTI dated 10.6.2011. 2.1 The CPIO, Department of Expenditure vide letter No. 61(93)/E.III(B)/11- RTI dated 1.7.2011 provided a copy of D/Expenditure U.O. NO. 10(6)/E.III (B)/2011 dated 30.6.2011 addressed to Addl. FA (A & Addl. Secretary), Ministry of Defence pertaining to modifications for Group B Cadres in the Central Government. 2.2 The CPIO, Office of the Controller General of Defence Accounts vide letter No. AN/III/RTI/CPIO/DDS-180/C. No. 1048 dated 20.7.2011 has also provided a copy of the aforementioned O.M. of the Ministry of Finance, Department of Expenditure, E-III Branch. The said O.M. makes it clear that the Ministry of Defence had made a reference to Department of Expenditure regarding grant of GP of Rs. 5400 to Assistant Accounts Officer, of the Defence Accounts Department on completion of four years service in the grade which has been replied to by Department of Expenditure as per the O.M. The respondent are not expected, under the RTI Act to provide reasons, explanations, beyond what is available as per records.
3. Since requisite information as per record and permissible under the RTI Act has been provided by the respective CPIOs of DoPT, Department of Expenditure and Office of the Controller General of Defence Accounts, no action is called for on the part of the Commission.
Chief Information Commissioner
Citation: Shri D.D. Saini v. Department of Personnel & Training in Case No. CIC/SM/A/2011/002349/SS