Information regarding NOC on transfer of a certain property was sought - CIC: furnish an affidavit regarding missing documents; reconstruct the NOC file as missing file cannot be used as a defense for not furnishing the information; SCN issued for penalty
2. The appellant submitted that through his RTI application dated 2632013, he is seeking information regarding NOC on the transfer of land/property bearing Mustatil No.99, Killa Nos. 7/2, 8,9,10/1 total admeasuring 12 Bighas Khata No.592701 in the village Dera Mandi, New Delhi, which was mutated in the name of M/s Agrasen Estates Pvt. Ltd and also action taken on his letter dt. 152012. Having received no reply within the prescribed period, the appellant preferred First Appeal. FAA by his order dated 2352013 directed the PIO/SDM(HQ) and PIO(SRVA) to provide the information to the appellant within 15 days on receipt of the order. Claiming nonsatisfaction over the information furnished by the respondent authority, the appellant filed 2nd appeal before the Commission.
3. Heard the submissions made by both the parties. The respondent Mr. Ashok Kumar, Tehsildar (Hauz Khas) submits that he had furnished the information to the appellant on 1172013 after the FAA order. The Commission notes that this information was provided after 2 months, when the FAA order was to give information within 15 days. In his forwarding letter dt. 1172013, he has not referred to the enclosure which is an extract of dispatch register of NOC. The respondent officer submits that the file dealing with the NOC was missing ever since he had taken over from his predecessor. His reply also does not contain answers to the RTI questions regarding details of NOC and the action taken on appellant’s letter dt. 152012. He also says that they need not hear the objections of complainant/appellant, before the issue of NOC. But the appellant contended that generally the objections against the issue of NOC are heard by the Revenue authorities and thus he was deprived of this opportunity before the issue of NOC. On a query raised by the Commission as to the number of NOC files missing, the respondent said he was not having this information, but he has inquired into the missing of this particular NOC file. The Commission, therefore, directs the respondent officer Mr. Ashok Kumar, Tehsildar (Hauz Khas) to furnish all these facts in the form of an Affidavit to the Commission within 15 days from the date of receipt of this order with a copy to the appellant.
4. The appellant further submits that the NOC file can be reconstructed by the respondent officer, by collecting the copies from three different divisions of his department, i.e. SubRegistrar’s office, Kanungo’office and from Tehsildar(Notification). The respondent officer is, therefore, directed to make all efforts to reconstruct the NOC file by collecting the relevant papers from the concerned revenue authorities, as RTI Act does not provide missing file as defense for not furnishing the information to the appellant. This is a serious lapse on the part of the public authority and the Commission views it seriously, as the appellant has been cheated by the seller of the land on the basis of the NOC, which cannot be issued by the respondent officer without hearing the objections from the concerned parties.
5. In view of the above, the Commission directs the respondent officers, namely, PIO/SDM(HQ), PIO(SRVA) and Mr. Ashok Kumar, Tehsildar (Hauz Khas) to comply with the order of FAA dated 2352013 in its entirety including the directions given above within fifteen days from the date of receipt of this order and show cause why maximum penalty cannot be imposed on them for not complying with the FAA order within the prescribed time period. Their explanations should reach the Commission within 3 weeks from the date of receipt of this order.
6. The Commission orders accordingly.
(M. Sridhar Acharyulu)
Citation: Mr. Sunil Dhingra v. Sub Divisional Magistrate (Hauz Khas), GNCTD in File No.CIC/DS/A/2013/001122SA