Can the information related to disease, treatment, PAN no, PF etc. be termed as personal?
The appellant filed an application under the Right to Information (RTI) Act with the North Western Railway seeking information regarding the name of the patients, treatment given to them along with the prescribed medicine names who were admitted to the CMC Railway Hospital. He also wanted the details of salaries paid to all the officials working in the Hospital; names and details of treatment and medicines given to relatives of DRM and CMS in the Hospital; copy of duty register etc. The Public Information Officer (PIO) denied the information claiming that information such as PAN, PF, and savings insurance cannot be provided as the same are personal in nature.
During the hearing before the Central Information Commission (CIC), the appellant submitted that he is seeking this information as his elder brother’s medicines were changed frequently by the by the Doctors under whom he was treated. He stated that as per his belief, the Doctors were not able to diagnose the problem with his brother.
View of CIC
The Commission accepted the contentions of the PIO and denied the information related to patients diseases, their treatment and PF details observing that these details are personal in nature and exempt from disclosure 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 RTI Act. However, the Commission directed the PIO to allow the appellant to inspect the records with respect to the remaining information sought by him after severing the information under section 10(1) Where a request for access to information is rejected on the ground that it is in relation to information which is exempt from disclosure, then, notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, access may be provided to that part of the record which does not contain any information which is exempt from disclosure under this Act and which can reasonably be severed from any part that contains exempt information. of the RTI Act.
Citation: Shri Lalit Kumar Vyas v North Western Railway in File No: CIC/AD/A/2012/002610
RTI Citation : RTIFI/2013/CIC/1125
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