List of research publications of Dr. Tewary was sought - Respondent: Research publications of IGFRI scientists are published in the Annual Report & are available on website, Scientists wise information was not compiled separately - CIC upheld the order
1. Shri A.S. Gill, the appellant, sought full list of research publications of Dr. Sunil Tewary, Head of Division, Crop Production, Indian Grassland & Fodder Research Institute (IGFRI), Jhansi, where he was the senior author in the field of Agroforestry Research. .
2. The CPIO intimated the appellant that the information was available on IGFRI website. Dissatisfied, the appellant approached the FAA. The FAA upheld the CPIO’s reply. Being aggrieved, the appellant came in appeal before the Commission stating that required information had not been provided by the CPIO.
3. The matter was heard by the Commission. The appellant stated that the information sought had not been provided to him. He stated that the CPIO had provided the website link of IGFRI, however, no research publication of Dr. Sunil Tewary as the senior author was available on the website. He added that he needed the certified copy of information sought.
4. The respondent stated that the appellant had sought list of research publications of Dr. Sunil Tewary and was informed vide letter dated 05.04.2016 that the research publications of IGFRI scientists were compiled every year and published in the Annual Report of IGFRI. All the Annual Reports were available on the IGFRI website i.e. http//www.igfri.res.in/publications.aspx, however, scientists wise information was not compiled separately.
5. On hearing both the parties, the Commission observes that the information sought is available on the IGFRI’s website in public domain. Here it will be apt to quote the Commission’s decision dated 12/04/2007 [Appeal No. CIC/AT/A/2007/00112] [Shri K. Lall v Sh M K Bagri, Assistant Registrar of Companies & CPIO], wherein it has been held as under:
“…..it would mean that once certain information is placed in public domain accessible to the citizens either freely or on payment of a predetermined price, that information cannot be said to be „held‟ or „under the control‟ of the public authority and thus would cease to be an „information‟ accessible under the RTI Act.”
It is clear that the information sought is already placed on the TFRI website and though is in public domain. The commission therefore does not find any need to interfere with the respondent’s decision. The appeal is disposed of.
Citation: Shri C.T. Nataraja v. Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru in Appeal No. CIC/SA/A/2016/901858/MP, Date of Decision: August 10, 2017