Can the judicial records be sought from the Supreme Court under RTI?
The appellant filed an application under the Right to Information (RTI) Act with the Supreme Court of India (SCI) seeking a copy of the Public Interest Litigation (PIL) which he had filed earlier in the Supreme Court. The Public Information Officer (PIO) informed that his PIL had been dismissed by the Court and that he could obtain the certified copy of the Court’s order and any such judicial document by moving an application to the Registrar under Order XII of the Supreme Court Rules 1966.
During the hearing before the Central Information Commission (CIC), the appellant pointed out that the reply of the PIO and FAA had certain errors. The PIO’s order had cited the year of the disposal of his PIL incorrectly while that of the FAA had incorrectly mentioned his address. He claimed that because of these errors, he had to incur certain expenses which he could have been spared. He also demanded that the copy of the petition should be provided to him. The respondent submitted that the so called errors were inadvertent and typographical in nature and did not materially affect the content of the decision of the PIO. As regards the copy of the petition, they submitted that the appellant could get it from the Supreme Court by following the procedure prescribed in the Supreme Court Rules 1966.
View of CIC
The Commission agreed with the decision of the PIO and added that the citizens seeking copies of judicial records must get these from the Supreme Court under their own rules and not under the RTI Act.
The Apex Court should decide the issue whether a citizen has an option to use any method of his choice for seeking information.
Citation: Mr. Satyanarayan Prasad v. Supreme Court of India in File No.CIC/SM/A/2012/000713
RTI Citation : RTIFI/2013/CIC/1109
Click here to view original RTI order of Court / Information Commission