Enquiry reports furnished by CVC - matter related to allegations of irregularities in recruitment - appellant was one of the candidates – CIC: the appellant has a right to know about the views of the CVO
1. The Appellant had preferred three RTI applications seeking, in the main, one major item of information, namely, the enquiry reports furnished by both the then and the present CVO of the Visakhapatnam Port trust on his complaint which had been forwarded to him by the CVC. The CPIO concerned had not agreed to disclose these reports claiming that the matter was still inconclusive, that the enquiry was still not over and that the matter was also subjudice. His appeals had also been disposed of by the Appellate Authority without giving any further relief.
2. During the hearing, the Appellant insisted that he should be given a copy of these enquiry reports not only of the former CVO but also the one submitted by the present CVO in May 2013. On the other hand, the respondents representing both the CVC and the CVO of the Visakhapatnam Port Trust argued that since the enquiry was inconclusive and the CVC was yet to take a view in the matter and also, finally, because the matter was subjudice in the Andhra Pradesh High Court, it would not be right to disclose the reports of the CVOs.
3. The Respondent representing the CVC showed us the said reports furnished by the then CVO as well as by the present CVO. Both the reports of the CVOs seem to be entirely factual. Each of the two CVOs has clearly acknowledged that he had no access to the original documents because the authorities concerned had claimed that those documents were not simply available. They have based all their findings on the certified copies of some documents which the Visakhapatnam Port Trust had placed before the Andhra Pradesh High Court in connection with the matter pending before it. Based on those documents, and without any access to the original records, the former CVO had furnished his report. As far as the present CVO is concerned, his report is also an enumeration of the facts of the case till now. There is nothing in the Right to Information (RTI) Act which would come in the way of the disclosure of these reports. The reports do not contain any information which is either personal in nature or which could impede any pending disciplinary proceeding or police investigation. Besides it must be noted that this matter relates to allegations of irregularities in a recruitment which took place some 13 years back. The Appellant, who claims that he was a candidate for this particular recruitment, has some right to know about the views of the CVO even if his report is not as conclusive as it could have been if the original documents had been found out. The Respondent representing the CVC, however, submitted that since these reports had been received by them only recently in the month of May, these were yet to be placed before the Commission for taking a view in the matter. According to him, disclosure of the reports at this stage would adversely affect the decision making on the part of the Commission which might order any further action in the case.
4. Keeping the above facts in view, we direct the CPIO concerned in the CVC to provide a copy of the reports furnished by the then and the present CVO of the Visakhapatnam Port Trust on the complaint of the Appellant after showing the same to the Commission. The entire exercise be completed within two months and the copies of the reports provided to the Appellant.
Chief Information Commissioner
Citation: Sh. Rednam Deepak v. Central Vigilance Commission, Visakhapatnam Port Trust, in File No.CIC/SM/A/2013/000332, 607 & 686