PIO: the 2011 census figures have not been released and religion wise data of the nation is not available in provisional census figures - CIC: intimate when the census figures would be released and what elements would be covered in it
1. The appellant filed an RTI application on 21.02.2013 seeking information pertaining to provisional census figures.
2. The PIO responded on 16.04.2013 and informed the appellant that the census figures are not yet released. The appellant filed a first appeal on 23.04.2013 with the first appellate authority (FAA). The FAA responded on 09.05.2013. The appellant filed a second appeal on 30.05.2013 with the Commission.
3. The appellant referred to his RTI application of 21.02.2013 and stated that the respondent has been evasive in attending to his RTI application in which he has sought information on two clearly stated points which pertained to the religion wise data of the national population in certain format of census 2011.
4. The appellant stated that he did get a response from the CPIO on 16.04.2013 in which he was told that the 2011 census figures have not yet been released but the same are expected to be released very soon.
5. The appellant further stated that the respondent's evasiveness and hesitation to provide religion wise figures of the Census 2011 appeared to be motivated. The appellant stated that the data be either shared with him in whatever state it is or should be released in public domain as is being done under census operations being held in India since 1881. The appellant further stated that the census figures are expected to be revealed suo moto.
6. The appellant further stated that he cannot understand why the information which is already available with the respondent is not being shared with the public. The appellant stated that the information which should have been in the public domain automatically is being withheld.
7. The respondent did not participate in the hearing. But, from the material on record, it is apparent that the respondent in letter dated 09.05.2013 stated that the 2011 census figures would be released soon and that the religion wise data are not available in provisional census figures.
8. The respondent is directed to inform the appellant, within 30 days of this order, about when would the information sought, i.e., the census figures be released and what subjects/elements would be covered in the information to be released in context of the RTI application. The appeal is disposed of. Copy of decision be given free of cost to the parties.
Citation: Shri Priyadarshi Dutta v. Ministry of Home Affairs in Decision No. CIC/SS/A/2013/001596/VS/05811