RTI Applicants should ask for file noting instead of reasons for taking a certain decision
The appellant filed an application under the Right to Information (RTI) Act with the Department of Legal Affairs (DLA) seeking information in respect of the decision of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare for giving certain benefits of ACP to a particular physiotherapist Grade 1. He wanted certain clarifications from the PIO of the DLA concerning the basis on which the said recommendation had been given by the Department. The Public Information Officer (PIO) transferred the application to the PIO of the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT). He responded to the appellant with the observation that he could not offer any such clarification since it was not covered within the scope of the RTI Act.
During the hearing before the Central Information Commission (CIC), the appellant argued that the RTI application should not have been transferred to DoPT since the desired information was held by the DLA and not the DoPT.
View of CIC
The Commission observed that there was no reason why the RTI application was transferred in the first place. The PIO of the Department of Legal Affairs could have himself responded to the appellant. However, the Commission rejected the appeal holding that the PIO cannot speculate about the basis on which the recommendation would have been made. The CIC further observed that the appellant should approach the Ministry of Law and ask for the copy of the file noting from the file in which the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare reference in this case had been processed and the said recommendation issued. The file noting might reveal the logic and the argument behind the recommendation.
Citation: Mr. A K Bhatnagar v. Department of Personnel and Training in File No.CIC/SM/A/2012/000264
RTI Citation : RTIFI/2012/CIC/840
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