A scholar sought information about action taken to release the 2nd instalment of her scholarship - CIC: It is astonishing that the PIO is not concerned with other wing & does not know how to access the online RTI application; Show cause for penalty issued
1. The appellant, a scholar, sought information about action taken to release the second instalment of her scholarship against MAEF Registration no. 1507ADP482. The appellant approached this Commission as there was no response from the public authorities and prayed for compensation for the deprivation suffered due to this delay.
2. Mr. Shakeel Ahmad, CPIO, submitted that the second installment for appellant’s scholarship for amount Rs. 6,000 was released on 30.07.2018. He stated that the delay in releasing the amount happened due to non-availability of her account details. He accepted that there was delay of over one year and the appellant was granted the scholarship amount only after receiving the second appeal. When questioned why the information under RTI was not given that officer stated that he was unable to respond to appellant’s online RTI application because he did not have password to access the online submissions. He complained that the office did not generate login Id and password. He also stated that scholarship matters are dealt by another CPIO while he takes care of grants.
3. The appellant did not agree with the allegation that she had did not give her account details. She gave those details in the online application. Though her first scholarship amount was sanctioned timely, the second instalment was delayed and her RTI on that was not responded.
4. It is astonishing the PIO says he is not concerned with other wing and that he does not know how to access the online RTI applications. If that is the case how can he call himself as PIO under RTI Act? It is also not known when he would try to access the online RTI applications and answer them, and so far how many RTI online requests were not answered? It is nothing but sheer negligence of public authority and PIO towards the RTI and online mechanism to respond to the RTI questions. They failed to give scholarship in time, they do not know operation of online RTI applications, and do not bother about them till now.
5. The Commission directs Mr. Shakeel Ahmad, CPIO, and other CPIO dealing with scholarship to explain the reasons for delay in releasing the second installment for scholarship amount to the appellant, and inform in the form of affidavit to the Commission, how many online applications are pending, rejected and from when they would be responded, within 15 days.
6. The Commission directs Mr. Shakeel Ahmad, CPIO, and CPIO dealing with scholarships to show-cause why maximum penalty should not be imposed upon each of them for not furnishing information sought by the appellant, within 30 days. The Commission requires the Public Authority to explain why it should not be directed to pay compensation to the appellant for not responding to her RTI online application within 30 days, before 4th September 2018. The case is posted for compliance and penalty proceedings on 4th September 2018 at 2.30 pm.
(M. Sridhar Acharyulu)
Central Information Commissioner
Citation: Ms. Nargis Sultana Appellant v. Maulana Azad Education Foundationin Second Appeal No.: CIC/MAZEF/A/2018/614486, Date of Decision – 03.08.2018