Can reasons for detention of employee and his family members be sought under RTI?
The applicant had filed a complaint with Central Organisation for Modernisation of Workshops (COFMOW) seeking to know whether an employee of the Public Authority had informed his office about the reasons for him, his wife and his sister in law being detained in Tihar Jail for three months during 2010. Later, he filed an application under Right to Information (RTI) Act seeking the action taken on his complaint. The Public Information Officer (PIO) transferred the application to Northern Railway under section 6(3) of the RTI Act as the information sought by the appellant pertained to the period when the said person was employed at Northern Railway. The PIO, Northern Railway however transferred the RTI Application back to the O/o FA & CAO, COFMOW stating that the information about the said person can be provided by the COFMOW since the person was posted there at present. The First Appellate Authority (FAA) too informed the appellant that the information sought can only be provided by Northern Railway.
The appellant informed the Central Information Commission (CIC) that he has received incomplete information since he has not been informed whether the said person had informed the office about the detention of his wife and sister in law including reasons for their detention. The respondent explained that the information sought by the appellant was not available in the records of the Public Authority and that this type of information is not expected to be maintained by the Public Authority since there is no rule which stipulates that a Government employee needs to inform the office about detention of his family members in prison if the family members are not employees of the Public Authority.
View of CIC
The Commission rejected the appeal observing that disclosure of sought information is not possible since the same is not available in the records of the Public Authority.
Citation: Mr. Ashwani Kumar v. Central Organization for Modernization of Workshops Railway Officers in File No CIC/AD/A/2012/000855
RTI Citation : RTIFI/2012/CIC/682
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