CIC- records relating to ongoing RTI application should be preserved
The appellant had appeared in the Civil Services Main examination, 2010 and was not satisfied with the marks awarded to him in the Geography paper II. He filed an application under the Right to Information (RTI) Act with the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) to get the copy of the evaluated answer sheet of this particular paper. The Public Information Officer (PIO) declined to provide it under section 8(1)(d) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, there shall be no obligation to give any citizen, information including commercial confidence, trade secrets or intellectual property, the disclosure of which would harm the competitive position of a third party, unless the competent authority is satisfied that larger public interest warrants the disclosure of such information; of the RTI Act.
During the hearing before the Central Information Commission (CIC), the respondent pointed out that the Supreme Court of India had stayed the orders passed by the Kerala High Court in which it held that the UPSC must disclose the evaluated answer sheets to the candidates. The UPSC is thus no longer required to disclose the evaluated answer sheets as long as the stay continues.
View of CIC
The Commission held that in view of the recent stay granted by the Supreme Court, it would be prudent to await the final outcome of that case. The CIC directed the UPSC to retain the physical records relating to this case until the matter is finally settled by the Supreme Court. The Commission directed the PIO to convey this to the appropriate authorities so that the evaluated answer sheets are kept duly preserved.
Citation: Mr. Hemendra Pratap Singh v. Union Public Service Commission in File No. CIC/SM/A/2012/000741
RTI Citation : RTIFI/2013/CIC/923
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