Information regarding Md. Saif who was arrested during Batla House encounter was denied u/s 8(1)(h) - CIC: order of PIO upheld as trial pending in court; documents in relation to the police force made available for presence of Md. Saif to be provided
1. The facility of video conference has been arranged for the appellant from Ghaziabad Jail. The appellant is present for the hearing. The respondent is being represented by Shri L.N Rao (DCP/Spl. Cell/HQ& PIO). The said two file contains the same RTI application and hence being decided by a common order.
2. The appellant filed an RTI application dated 24.11.2011 (from Ghaziabad jail) seeking information in relation to Md. Saif who was arrested during the Batla House encounter (in relation to the 2008 serial blasts in Delhi). The appellant has sought information on (4) points wherein:
At point (1) he sought to know how many case/s has been registered against Md. Saif and in which police stations along with the FIR No.
At point (2) the appellant sought to know whether Md. Saif has given any statement in relation to the Blasts at Varanasi Sankat Morchan Mandir, Cantt. Railway station and Dashashmegh in the year 2008 and whether Md. Saif was produced in Varanasi Court in relation to the said statement/case in 2008 or after that.
At point (3) the appellant sought to know, if Md. Saif was produced in the Varanasi court by the Delhi police then documents in relation to the process of obtaining adequate force for the presence of Md. Saif in court to be provided.
And lastly at point (4) if Md. Saif was produced in court, then a copy of orders/directions passed by the court to be provided.
3. The PIO Delhi Police Headquarters transferred the RTI application vide letter dated 4.1.2012 and also informed the appellant vide letter dated 6.1.2012 that his RTI application has been transferred to the concerned PIOs of Delhi Police. The CPIO, Special Cell, Police Headquarters, New Delhi replied vide letter dated 19.1.2012 and provided the relevant information sought at point no. (1) of the RTI application. With regard to point (2) to (3) the CPIO replied that as the court case is pending in relation to the information sought, the same cannot be provided under section 8(1)(h) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, there shall be no obligation to give any citizen, information which would impede the process of investigation or apprehension or prosecution of offenders; of the RTI Act. Thereafter, the appellant filed first appeal dated 27.1.2012. The first appellate authority, Special Cell, Delhi Police, upheld the decision of the CPIO vide order dated 22.2.2012. The CPIO, Central Jail No. 1, Tihar, vide letter dated 5.3.2012 New Delhi provided the case in relation to which Md. Saif was produced before the Varanasi Court .
4. During the hearing the respondent has apprised the Commission that the appellant is in Judicial Custody and that all the documents in relation to which the information is sought have been filed in the court. During the hearing, the appellant presses for the statement of Md. Saif in relation to which he was produced in the Varanasi Court.
5. The Commission is of the view that as the trial is pending in the concerned court as stated by the respondent, the order of the CPIO is upheld. However, in relation to point (3) wherein the appellant has sought to have the documents in relation to the police force made available required for presence of Md. Saif shall be provided if held on record by the respondent within two weeks from the receipt of the order. The CPIO, Central Jail No. 1, Tihar jail has already provided the information that in relation to which case Md. Saif was produced in the Varanasi Court. The appeal is disposed off accordingly.
Citation: Waliullah v. Delhi Police, Special Cell in Case No. CIC/SS/A/2012/001949 CIC/SS/A/2012/001959