Copies of the minutes of the Meetings of the Advisory Committee for the SEBI Investor Protection & Education Fund were sought - Appellant: Investor should be aware of the policies & suggestions which come up in the meetings - CIC: provide copy of minutes
1. The appellant, Dr. T S Nazreth, submitted RTI application dated August 6, 2013 before the Central Public Information Officer (CPIO), Securities Exchange Board of India (SEBI), Mumbai seeking copies of the minutes of the Meetings of the Advisory Committee for the SEBI Investor Protection and Education Fund (IPEF) etc., through a total of 3 points.
2. Vide reply dated August 23, 2013, the CPIO furnished information sought at point 1 with respect to number of times meeting took place, date and time, as available and denied the information with reference to report of committee and minutes of meeting etc. stating that the report of the committee and minutes of the meetings of the committee were confidential information and strategic to the functioning of the SEBI and it contained information which was in nature of commercial confidence of SEBI and received by SEBI in fiduciary capacity and cannot be furnished in terms of section 8(1) (a), (d) & (e) of the RTI Act, 2005. Not satisfied with the decision of CPIO, the appellant preferred appeal dated 13 September 2013 before the first appellate authority (FAA) alleging that he had not been given the desired information. Vide order dated 11 October 2013, the FAA upheld the decision of CPIO.
3. Dissatisfied with the response of the public authority, the appellant preferred appeal before the Commission.
4. The matter was heard by the Commission. The appellant submitted that he had sought minutes of meeting as the investor should be aware of the policies and suggestions which come up in the meetings. The respondents submitted that the advisory committee was purely advisory and recommendatory in nature. The minutes were also in the form of deliberations. The SEBI may decide to take action on the minutes if it deems fit.
5. The Commission directs the respondents to provide copy of minutes from the 8th Meeting to the 15th Meeting, keeping the provisions of the RTI Act, 2005 to the appellant. The appeal is disposed of.
Citation: Dr. T S Nazreth v. Securities Exchange Board of India in Appeal No. CIC/MP/A/2014/000162