Copy of the field investigation report prepared by BPCL in respect of offer of a person for a dealership was denied u/s 8(1)(d) & (j) - CIC: exclude personal information like details of bank accounts, IT return & PAN card etc. of third party
This matter pertains to an RTI application dated 25.4.2013 filed by the Appellant, seeking a copy of the field investigation report prepared by the Respondents in respect of the offer of a person, placed at number 1 in the selection process for a dealership. The Appellant also sought the name and address of the officer, who prepared the report. The CPIO responded on 2.5.2013 and denied the information 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; and (j).
Not satisfied with the reply of the CPIO, the Appellant filed an appeal to the First Appellate Authority on 30.5.2013. Not having heard from the FAA, she filed second appeal dated 24.6.2013 to the CIC, which was received by the Commission on 1.7.2013.
2. The Appellant was not present in spite of a written notice having been sent to her. The Respondents reiterated the reply already given by them to the Appellant. Having considered the records and the submissions made by the Respondents, we direct the CPIO to provide a copy of the field investigation report in question to the Appellant by resorting to the severability clause under Section 10 of the RTI Act, as necessary, to exclude personal information such as address, details of bank balance / bank accounts, income tax returns and PAN card etc. of the third party. The CPIO is further directed to complete action on our above directive within thirty working days of the receipt of this order, under intimation to the Commission.
3. With the above directions, the appeal is disposed of.
4. Copies of this order be given free of cost to the parties.
Citation: Smt. Usha Devi v. Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd., in File No. CIC/LS/A/2013/001619/SH