Can the information regarding official tours be disclosed under RTI?
The appellant sought the copies of applications submitted by a person seeking advances for meeting expenses connected with his tours for a period of 17months, approval of the Competent Authority for every tour, the mode of payments along with the cheque number and date of the cheque. He also wanted the copies of T.A. Bills submitted by the person. The Public Information Officer (PIO) denied the information under section 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 Right to Information (RTI) Act.
View of CIC
The Central Information Commission (CIC) observed that expenses incurred from Public funds for official tours cannot be termed personal information of anyone. The Commission directed the PIO to provide details of official tours undertaken by the person, the places visited, dates of tour, expenditure incurred and purpose of visits and advances taken for tours and approval of competent authority for undertaking the tours during the period.
Citation: Mr. P.C. Ramakrishniah v. Coal Mines Provident Fund Organisation, in Appeal No.CIC/SS/A/2012/000483
RTI Citation : RTIFI/2012/CIC/514
Click here to view original RTI order of Court / Information Commission