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Thread: Can legal adviser answer behalf of public Authority ?

  1. #1

    Can legal adviser answer behalf of public Authority ?

    I filled the RTI seeking the the info abt the fees collection in Govt aided school. I got the reply from the legal adviser of the institution.
    Wanted to get few clarifications for further proceedings…
    • Can a Legal Advisor reply to the RTI on behalf of a particular Public Authority {organization/ Institution}.
    • In the letter the Legal Advisor has specifically quoted that the application is wrongly addressed as well this institution is not covered under the RTI act….
    • In the reply from the PA,{sent by the Legal Advisor on behalf of the Institution} had used Demeaning/Dehumanizing and Demotivating language – as per my assumption I clearly see that there is an strategy used for me to withdraw this application from further proceedings…
      • How do I take up this unlawful words used in the RTI by the Legal Advisor as well how do I Pass on the information that RTI is a common man’s law to the Advocate?
      • What is the clause for me to fill against this para that did hit my Humaniness?
    • Hence forth – How should I proceed with this application?

  2. #2
    C J Karira
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    Re: Can legal adviser answer behalf of public Authority ?


    Very interesting case !

    1. Legal Adviser cannot sign a reply to a RTI Application.
    It has to be invariably be signed by the PIO.
    Please read this complete thread:
    This can be one of the grounds for first appeal.

    2. I cannot understand what is meant by application is wrongly addressed.
    Did you application say at the top: "Application under RTI Act 2005" ?
    Did your application indicate anywhere that it was under RTI Act ?
    If any of the above is true/correct, then it should have gone to the PIO.

    3. However, in your case, the Public Authority (PA) has denied that they are a PA, therefore question of having a PIO does not arise.

    4. You have to argue in your First Appeal that the school is a PA.
    There is a various decisions of the CIC about if a Govt. aided school is a PA or not.
    Please see:

    5. The "language" part is serious.
    Make this one of the reasons for your appeal.
    At the end of the appeal "pray" or "make a plea" that the concerned PIO should be strictly warned to use proper language in official replies, etc. etc. etc. AND that disciuplinary action be taken as per prevalent rules and regulations and that you should be informed of the action taken.

    6. Proceed with First Appeal.
    Last edited by karira; 15-01-08 at 10:44 PM.

  3. Re: Can legal adviser answer behalf of public Authority ?

    u will have to prove that school is a Public Authority by proving how much aid they are getting. I suggest that instead of approaching the school, the education dept of the govt should also be asked the required details of the school in question. This is an additional way out.

  4. Re: Can legal adviser answer behalf of public Authority ?

    Hi folks,
    I have a question here, might well end up looking stupid but neverthless i shall raise it. Who holds the authority to decide if the contribution of the Govt is substantial enough to be deemed as a "Public Authority" and is there a well established forum of the Govt where one can easily access this information rather than putting an RTI everytime you want to figure out if one is really a PA... Also If one such forum doesnt exist, can we put an RTI claim from CIC and ask them "To establish an Authority to publish a list of all Public Authority.

    Runing my life as a S/W engineer

  5. Re: Can legal adviser answer behalf of public Authority ?

    You might like to read the glossary term here:
    RTI India - Glossary - Substantially Financed

    And unfortunately there is no established proactive disclosure in many Ministries and Government Offices. It is for this we started campaign

    You might like to download the sample application and start using it to get Government organs to participate more.

  6. #6

    Re: Can legal adviser answer behalf of public Authority ?

    Hi All,

    Thanks for all your input. I have filled the first appeal 22nd Jan with the Tamil Nadu state information commisionar. Below are the sequence of events happend,

    - 22nd Jan i filled the first appeal to the State information commission.
    - Waited for 40 days. Haven't got any response.
    - Called state commissionrs office. They asked me to send the reminder to the PA(School HM)
    - Waited for another 40 days.No responce
    - Inform the same to the commissionrs office.
    - After 15 days commisionar send the hearing notice to both the parties(Me and the School HM)
    - Hearing happend on 26th June.
    - Commissionar paased the order on same day.I have received the signed copy on 8th July 2008.
    Order details :
    - The public Authority violated the provisions of Act.The information must be proived with in three days of this order and deliver to the petitionar at his place. His acknowledgement obtained and file to the commission.The information must be provided free of cost and any payment made by the petitionar must be refunded to her.
    - and also he gave three weeks time to give the clarrifications on the why he(PA) refused to provide the information.

    It almost 3 weeks the order has been passed. So for no information from the PA.

    Hence forth €“ How should I proceed with this further ? "

  7. #7

    Re: Can legal adviser answer behalf of public Authority ?

    I would suggest writing a letter to Chief State Information Commissioner regarding the same. Quote the order and date in the letter. Also forward a copy of the same to the PA (School HM) and First Appellate Authority (which should be Director Public Instructions (S)). In the letter also ask for the PA to be punished under section 20(1) and 20(2) of RTI Act.

  8. #8

    Re: Can legal adviser answer behalf of public Authority ?

    Thanks for your input Jiwateshwar. Can you please tell me who is the first appellate authority. You mentioned 'Director Public Instructions '. I am not clear about this.

    Need your input .


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