Can details of grant-in-aid given to KRIBHCO & Gramin Vikas Trust be disclosed under RTI?
The appellant filed an application under the Right to Information (RTI) Act with the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers and the Department of Fertilizers seeking information on some points regarding grant-in-aid given to KRIBHCO/ Gramin Vikas Trust (GVT). The Public Information Officer (PIO) sought assistance from the KRIBHCO and GVT.
During the hearing before the Central Information Commission (CIC), the respondent submitted that the requisite information was not available in the Department and the GVT took time to trace its records. On receipt of information containing documents up to 134 pages the appellant was requested to deposit Rs. 268/- towards the cost of documents. The appellant requested the PIO to provide him the documents free of cost as the stipulated time limit prescribed under the RTI Act was surpassed, accordingly the required documents and information was provided to the appellant. The appellant further stated that he had not been provided relevant information regarding copy of proposal for grant-in-aid for each of the grant-in-aid given, as submitted by KRIBHCO. In response the PIO informed the appellant that no grant-in-aid was given to KRIBHCO by Department of Fertilizers. However, funds under Indo-UK Fertilizer Development Programme (Externally Aided Scheme) were given to KRIBHCO for Rainfed Farming Project.
View of CIC
The Commission observed that the appellant sought copies of proposals for grant-in-aid for each of the grant-in-aid submitted by KRIBHCO and the PIO has not addressed the specific query. The Commission directed the First Appellant Authority (FAA) to give specific reply to the appellant in this regard.
Citation: Ms. Ramesh Chandra Bawa v. Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilizers, Department of Fertilizers in Case No. CIC/SS/A/2012/0001627