Can the RTI Act be used to direct the Public Authority to act or not to act in a particular way?
The appellant filed an application under the Right to Information (RTI) Act with the Delhi Police seeking information regarding action taken by the Police on alleged unauthorized construction at forty places within the jurisdiction of various police stations of North East District. The Public Information Officer (PIO) informed the appellant that sincere efforts were made to trace out the addresses but the properties could not be identified due to wrong addresses provided. The PIO also explained that when any construction is carried out, the concerned Civil Agency is informed and it is the duty of the MCD/ Civil Agency to check the construction site as to whether the construction is as per sanctioned plan or otherwise.
During the hearing before the Central Information Commission (CIC), the appellant submitted that as per section 466A of DMC Act, unauthorized constructions are a cognizable offence and the CrPC shall apply for the purpose of investigation. The respondent submitted that requisite information has been provided by them to the appellant.
View of CIC
The Commission held that the RTI Act could not be used to direct the Public Authority to act or not to act in a particular way. The CIC rejected the appeal stating that only information as defined in section 2(f) “information” means any material in any form, including records, documents, memos, e-mails, opinions, advices, press releases, circulars, orders, logbooks, contracts, reports, papers, samples, models, data material held in any electronic form and information relating to any private body which can be accessed by a public authority under any other law for the time being in force; can be provided under the RTI Act.
Citation: Mr. Anil Datt Sharma v. Delhi Police in Case No. CIC/SS/A/2012/001295
RTI Citation : RTIFI/2013/CIC/1304
Click here to view original RTI order of Court / Information Commission