Bank denied information as the identity of the appellant being the owner of the account in question not established - CIC: denial upheld; Commission refrained from interfering with the procedure of the bank to establish the identity of an account holder
This matter pertains to an RTI application dated 19.11.2012 filed by the Appellant, seeking information on eight points regarding non resident account number 49, opened in his name in the Respondent Bank. The CPIO responded on 27.11.2012 and stated that since the signatures of the Appellant did not tally with the signatures of the holder of the above account, they were not in a position to provide the information sought by the Appellant. Not satisfied with the reply of the CPIO, the Appellant filed an appeal to the First Appellate Authority on 14.12.2012. In his order dated 26.12.2012, the FAA upheld the CPIO’s reply. The Appellant approached the CIC in second appeal on 2.8.2013.
2. We heard the submissions of the Appellant and the Respondents. The Appellant submitted that he was working abroad and had kept his funds in an account in Bank of Baroda. He alleged that someone opened an account in his name in the Doli Branch of the Respondent Bank and fraudulently transferred the funds from his account in Bank of Baroda to the above mentioned account in Vijaya Bank. He further submitted that he has been following up the matter with the Respondent Bank for the last twelve years, but without any result. The Respondents submitted that the account, about which information was sought by the Appellant in his RTI application, is in their Jodhpur Branch and not Doli Branch, as mentioned by the Appellant. They further submitted that the account was opened in 1993, when there was no practice of obtaining a photograph of the account opener. A copy of passport was submitted for opening the account. However, it contains a very old photograph of the passport holder. The Respondents stated that the address given for opening the account does not tally with the address of the Appellant. According to the Respondents, in view of the above, the key information with them to establish the identity of the account holder are his signatures and the signatures of the Appellant do not tally with the signatures of the account holder.
3. We have considered the submissions made before us by both the parties. We note that the Respondents have denied the information because, as per the records held by them, they have not been able to establish that the Appellant is the holder of the account in question. In view of the foregoing, we would refrain from interfering with the procedure of the bank to establish the identity of an account holder and would not interfere with the decision of the Respondents to deny information in this case. As far as the Appellant’s allegation regarding fraudulent transfer of his funds is concerned, he is at liberty to pursue the matter in an appropriate forum.
4. With the above observations, the appeal is disposed of.
5. Copies of this order be given free of cost to the parties.
Citation: Shri A R Qureshi v. Vijaya Bank in File No. CIC/VS/A/2013/001318/SH