New Delhi, July 30: The Central Information Commission has directed the DDA to make available all files and documents related to the Rohini Residential Scheme of 1981 for inspection.
Taking the development body to task for refusing information to an RTI applicant, the panel has directed the heads of the Planning, Engineering and Land Management Departments to provide relevant information to the applicants by September 14, 2007.
Since there is a “large public interest involved, the DDA Vice-Chairman should ensure that the required information is timely imparted”, the Commission said.
The CIC’s directive came after Rajiv Sapra, a family friend of Naresh Chand—one of the applicants to the scheme—filed an RTI application in November last year.
Speaking to Newsline, Rajiv Sapra said he sought the status of the scheme 26 years after it was announced. “I wanted to know how long it would take the DDA to give plots to the applicants...also, whether the DDA had acquired the land from farmers...if so, at what price.”
DDA officials, however, told Sapra that he could not get the information as he was not an applicant himself.
His subsequent appeal for review of the scheme’s ‘master file’ too was rejected and Sapra was told that “there is no ‘master file’”.
Sapra then approached the CIC, which declared that the information was “general in nature relating to land acquisition and its utility in Rohini”. It criticised the DDA’s casual attitude and said the information should not have been refused in the first instance itself.
The order directs the heads of the various departments to go through Sapra’s application and make all files and documents related to the scheme available for inspection.
The order states that the heads of departments should appoint an officer to guide Sapra through the records and help him get the information.
The Commission noted that the original application had been directed to the Planning Department, and said that “had the Department addressed the application, perhaps most of the queries would have been answered”.
It noted that they (planning department) marked the application in a casual manner to another department, the OSD (Residential Land).
“Most of the 25,000 waiting applicants of the Rohini scheme are quite old and don’t have the energy to run around. The DDA has not given us our plots, and has held back information. Now, once we get to inspect the files, we’ll know it has not been able to execute the scheme even after two-and-a-half decades,” said Rahul Gupta, another applicant.
Provide details of 1981 Rohini residential scheme, CIC tells DDA