Information regarding appellant’s application for the post of nominated member of MCI was sought - CIC: there is a need for transparency in selection for reputed posts of public interest; frame rules for general public to know where to apply & put on web
Information regarding appellant’s application for the post of Nominated Member of MCI was sought - PIO: application was not received - CIC: information, as available on record, has been provided; there is a need for transparency in selection for reputed posts of public interest like the nominated members of MCI; frame a clear set of rules, so that the general public knows where and whom to apply and publish the same on the official website
The appellant sought information on 7 points regarding his application dated 09.09.2013 for the post of Nominated Member of MCI.
Relevant facts emerging during hearing:
The appellant is not present, despite written notice sent. The appellant filed an RTI application dated 08.11.2013, seeking the above information. CPIO/US, M/o Health & Family Welfare vide reply dated nil informed the appellant that his application dated 09.09.2013 has not been received and provided a copy of the complete list of nominated members of MCI. Regarding point 6 & 7, he stated that these points are not covered/s 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 RTI Act and for point 5, transferred the RTI application to MCI for furnishing the information. On not receiving any reply from the PIO, appellant filed first appeal. The FAA did not dispose of the appeal. The respondent from ministry stated that the appellant is seeking information about his application for the post of nominated member of MCI but the same has not been received in their section, however, complete list of nominated members of MCI was provided to the appellant. On query by the Commission whether for finalisation of the list of nominated members of MCI, other applications were also received, the respondent replied in the affirmative and stated that approximately 42 applications were received in the dept. When the Commission further queried regarding any guideline/rules publicised for the impending finalisation, the respondent replied in the negative. The respondent stated that the MCI does not lay down any qualifications for the said post but the members are selected as per the provisions of the Medical Council of India Act, 1956.
The instant RTI application is a pointer towards the need for transparency in selection for reputed posts of public interest like the nominated Members of Medical Council of India. The appellant applied for the post but it never reached the concerned section in the Ministry which processes such applications, due to which appellant’s application was not considered. This is because there was no public information regarding the selection for this post; hence, those applicants who had information regarding the same by word of mouth could apply in time. Since, it is quite clear that individual applications are also considered for selection for the post of Member, MCI in the nominated category by the Central Government, the Commission observes that had there been a proper set of rules/regulation for applying and if the same would have been given due publicity regarding terms & conditions, the relevant cut-off dates etc., the instant case would not have arisen. The Commission finds that, technically, information, as available on record, has been provided. However, in the absence of clear set of rules/regulations for filing an application to the Ministry, the case of the appellant was not taken up, which has given rise to the instant RTI application. As per the respondents’ submissions, there is no bar on applying. As per the appellant’ second appeal, his application was not accepted in the Ministry. In view of the above, the Commission directs the respondent authority to frame a clear set of rules/regulation, so that the general public knows where and whom to apply and publish/publicize the same on their official website u/s 19(8)(a)(iii), within four weeks of receipt of this order, under intimation to the Commission, so that the public have minimum resort to this Act. A copy of this order may be marked to Secretary, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, for information and necessary action. The appeal is disposed of accordingly.
Citation: Dr. Abdhesh Kr. Gupta v. M/o Health & Family Welfare, Medical Council of India in F.No. CIC/YA/A/2014/000298