Extra fee charged from the RTI applicant by J & K’s department of agriculture
An application was filed with the Agriculture Production Department, Civil Secretariat Jammu under the Right to Information (RTI) Act which was then forwarded to the Directorate of Agriculture, Kashmir.
The Public Information Officer (PIO) at the Directorate of Agriculture Kashmir, vide letter No SSO-PIO- 2012/13/145-147 dated 23-01-2013, asked the applicant to deposit Rs. 1440/- as the Xerox charge for 144 pages of the sought information i.e. Rs. 10 per page. The applicant, as per the letter, deposited the amount though he was required to pay only Rs. 288/-
However, Rule 4 (a) of the RTI Rules 2012 states that Rs. 2/- should be charged for each page (in A4 or A-3 size paper) created or copied. Later on learning that he had been charged more, the applicant demanded the extra fee charged upon him, but the PIO refused to return the extra amount. The PIO reportedly also failed to send the information to the applicant’s home address as had been directed by the Agriculture Production Department and rather sought ‘personal appearance’ of the application for taking the documents.