Correspondence between a cooperative bank and RBI regarding vacation of certain premises and occupants sought - inspection report of the RBI claimed exempt u/s 8(1)(a) and 8(1)(e) – disclosure stayed by HC In WP No. 76/2010
1. The appellant filed an RTI application on 1012012 requesting for a copy of the rules /guidelines issued by the RBI, debarring/ permitting a cooperative bank director, simultaneously occupying the post of Director in other cooperative societies and copies of the letters written by the Gandhiganj Coop Bank, Bidar to RBI.
2. The CPIO responded on 1722012. The appellant filed an appeal with the first appellate authority (FAA) on 2722012. The FAA did not respond. The appellant approached the Commission on 1552012 in a second appeal.
3. I heard the respondent through videoconferencing who stated that a similar matter had also come up for hearing earlier. The appellant had sought certain correspondence between a cooperative bank and the respondent in relation to the vacation of certain premises and occupants. The respondent stated that the appellant is also seeking copies of what the appellant has referred to as audit report of the RBI. The respondent stated that they have already responded to on 1722012 that the RBI basically does not conduct audits but carries out inspections, and that the inspection done by the RBI vis-a-viz the bank is coming under the exemption from disclosure clauses of the RTI Act, in particular section 8(1)(a) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, there shall be no obligation to give any citizen, information, disclosure of which would prejudicially affect the sovereignty and integrity of India, the security, strategic, scientific or economic interests of the State, relation with foreign State or lead to incitement of an offence; and section 8(1)(e) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, there shall be no obligation to give any citizen, information available to a person in his fiduciary relationship, unless the competent authority is satisfied that the larger public interest warrants the disclosure of such information; and hence information was not to be disclosed. The respondent further referred to an order of the Delhi High Court dated 1042012, i.e., WP No. 76/2010 wherein the High Court has directed the CIC to adjourn hearings on such inspection reports and correspondence between the RBI and other banks.
4. The appellant did not participate in the hearing.
5. The decision of the respondent is upheld. Appeal is disposed of.
Citation: Shri Ramdigval Vitthal Rao Digwal v. Reserve Bank of India in Decision No.CIC/VS/A/2012/000989/03985