Documents submitted by the subscriber at the time of installation of telephone was denied u/s 8(1)(j) – CIC: MTNL is bound to protect the confidentiality of its subscribers and third party information can be disclosed only in larger public interest
Information sought: The appellant had sought following information in respect of telephone no. 22243306-Cons No.2073240484:-
1. Whether for installation of landline any NOC is required from property owner or not.
2. If so whether any NOC was submitted at the time of filing application.
3. If so provide a copy of NOC for authentication, since appellant is the owner of property.
4. Also provide complete set of application filed at the time of request of installation.
Grounds for the Second Appeal:
The information as desired has not been given.
Relevant Facts emerging during Hearing:
The appellant’s representative stated that he wants to know whether NOC is required from the landlord for installation of telephone and he also wants the copies of the relevant documents submitted by the subscriber at the time of installation of telephone no. 22243306. The CPIO explained that this is a case of shifting of telephone and as per the rules the subscriber can request for shifting merely by submitting an application and no NOC is required from the landlord. As regard the copies of the documents submitted by the subscriber at the time of installation of the telephone the CPIO stated that the information is personal in nature and relates to third party hence, exempt under section 8(1)(j) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, there shall be no obligation to give any citizen, information which relates to personal information the disclosure of which has no relationship to any public activity or interest, or which would cause unwarranted invasion of the privacy of the individual unless the Central Public Information Officer or the State Public Information Officer or the appellate authority, as the case may be, is satisfied that the larger public interest justifies the disclosure of such information: Provided that the information which cannot be denied to the Parliament or a State Legislature shall not be denied to any person. of the RTI Act. The appellant’s representative stated that the copies of the relevant rules for installation/shifting of telephone may be provided. The CPIO handed over the information to the appellant’s representative.
The disclosable information has been provided. As regard the copies of the documents submitted by the subscriber, it has been held in the past that the MTNL is bound to protect the confidentiality of its subscribers and information relating to telephone connection of any subscriber cannot be disclosed to third parties being exempt under section 8(1) (j) of the RTI Act unless the seeker of information is able to show larger public interest to justify the disclosure. The appeal is disposed of accordingly.
Citation: Mr. Nand Lal v. MTNL in File No. CIC/BS/A/2012/001745/3884