Policies formulated for the Socio economic development of Denotified Tribes & Nomadic Tribes by GOI - proposal was submitted to the Ministry in 2008 and the same is still under consideration - CIC: information cannot be prematurely provided
Facts of the case:
1. The Appellant filed his RTI application dated 27.08.2011 with the CPIO, PMO, New Delhi seeking certain information against 3 points, including policies formulated for the Socioeconomic development of Denotified Tribes & Nomadic (semi nomadic) Tribes by the GOI in the 12th five year plan 20.12.2017; details of all schemes & programmes along with the nodal Ministry and Ministries/Department of GOI that will be implementing these polices along with the states (districts, blocks & wards) identified for such implementation; allocation made in plan expenditure and non plan expenditure for the implementation of the said policies and so on.
2. The CPIO, PMO vide his letter dated 04.09.2012 transferred this application to the CPIO, M/o Social Justice & Empowerment, who vide his letter dated 21.09.2012 provided point wise reply/ information to the Appellant. As for point (i), the CPIO stated that a proposal in this regard is under consideration, while also informing the Appellant that members of Denotified, Nomadic and Seminomadic Tribes belonging to SC, ST or OBC are eligible for the benefits admissible under the respective categories. As for point (i)(a), the CPIO informed that allocation of 12th five year plan has not been finalized as year. However, for the year 201213 Rs. 10 Crore has been budgeted for Grantsinaid General Education and Economical Development of De notified and Nomadic Tribes under the Plan Expenditure. As regards point (ii), the CPIO stated that he is not holder of the information. He, however, informed the Appellant that for the information relating to State, State Governments concerned may be requested to provide the information.
3. The Appellant, being aggrieved by the reply of the CPIO, filed his first appeal before the Appellate Authority on 05.10.2012 which the Appellate Authority decided vide his order dated 23.10.2012 holding that the reply given by the CPIO is factually correct.
4. The Appellant thereafter, being aggrieved by the order of the Appellate Authority, filed the present appeal before the Commission.
5. The Appellant in his present appeal has stated that the information provided by the CPIO is incorrect. He has also described (in his written submission dated 10.07.2013) the transfer of his RTI application to the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment by the CPIO, PMO as “wrong”. According to him, the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment is not competent to have “authentic information” in respect of his RTI application. He has also contended that his application should have been transferred to the Law Ministry. The Respondents, during the hearing, submit that report/proposal in respect of the issue mentioned in the Appellant’s RTI application was submitted to the Ministry in the year 2008 and that the same is still under consideration of the Ministry and that that it would not be appropriate to share the information with the Appellant till the Ministry takes a final view on the matter. They inform that only notional allocations had been made in the meanwhile and that the policy will be framed only after the final decision of Ministry on the matter.
6. On consideration of the submission of the parties and on perusal of records, the Commission concurs with the Respondents view that the information, except what has already been provided, sought by the Appellant cannot be prematurely provided to him until the Ministry takes a final decision on the matter. The Commission also does not see any merit in the Appellant’s contention that the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment do not have the authentic information and that his RTI application should have been transferred to the Law Ministry. The Commission, however, notes that query at point (ii) regarding enactment of Acts from 1950 till 2012 can be replied to by the Respondents more specifically. The CPIO is accordingly directed to furnish a categorical reply to the Appellant with regard to this point within 3 weeks of receipt of this order.
7. Appeal is disposed of accordingly.
Citation: Shri Mohan Dhansingh Chavan v. Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment in Case No. CIC/SS/C/2012/00965