Disclosure of reasons for referring a matter to the full bench of CIC under RTI
The appellant wanted the certified copies of the recommendation made by the Central Information Commissioner Shri ML Sharma in a particular case file while referring the matter to a full bench. The Public Information Officer (PIO) denied the information claiming exemption under Section 8(1) (b) of the RTI Act. On appeal, the First Appellate Authority remanded the matter to the CPIO in order to ascertain as to whether the disclosure of the information had been barred by the Commission. The PIO held that in terms of the Central Information Commission (CIC) decision dated 18 September 2007 in the appeal number CIC/AT/A/2006/00586, the internal noting /correspondence of tribunals were protected from disclosure.
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The appellant argued that he had every right to know about the basis for referring this matter to a full bench and the recommendation of the CIC including the file notings could not be classified under any of the exemption provisions. The Commission held that all orders including noting made by the presiding Information Commissioner in any case file are part and parcel of the case and are in the nature of quasi judicial records to which the citizens have a right to get the certified copies by following the laid down procedure. The Commissionn ruled that when the CIC decides to refer a matter to a larger bench, the copy of the decision if recorded in a file noting, cannot be denied to a citizen under the Right to Information (RTI) Act as it is clearly information within the meaning of 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; of the Right to Information (RTI) Act. Therefore, the Commission directed the PIO to provide this information to the appellant.
Citation: Mr. Milap Choraria v. Central Information Commission in File No.CIC/WB/A/2009/001009SM
RTI Citation : RTIFI/2013/CIC/233
Click here to view original RTI order of Court / Information Commission