Ludhiana, September 10: Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (GADVASU) seems to heading for a major showdown with the State Information Commission. The university has not only refused to give information to an applicant, but is also not attending the summons of the Commission. This is being done on the plea that they have received no notice from the Commission.
On May 30 this year, Dr Amarjeet Singh Grewal, a senior veterinary scientist, had demanded information from GADVASU under Right to Information Act (RTI). Dr Grewal had demanded the application forms of all those candidates selected for the post of Director Research, Dean Post graduate Studies and Dean College of Veterinary Sciences in December 2006.
“I too had applied for the posts, and was rejected for all three of them,” says Dr Grewal. The other information requested by Dr Grewal was regarding the final comments of the selection committee for all the three posts.
“One month later, the university refused to give me the information, citing a certain section. I then approached the State Commission, who summoned the university officials on July 24. No one from the university came for it. The Commission then overruled the university’s claim that they cannot provide me with the said information,” said Dr Grewal.
According to Dr Grewal, the Commission also observed that in case the university wants to put forward its case, it can approach the Commission on August 10. “Today, I telephoned the university officials and urged them to give me the information, so that both the parties do not have to go to Chandigarh for the purpose. I was told that till date, the university has not received any notice from the State Information Commission, and so will not give the information or present itself before the Commission,” added Dr Grewal.
Dr Grewal pointed out, “It is interesting to see that I have received the Commission’s notice, while the university has not. When I offered them to see my copy of the orders, they refused to do so.”
When contacted, a senior official in the Commission who did not want to be identified, said, “This is a usual practice with the government departments. They usually take this plea. But the fact is that all summons of the RTI are sent via registered letter, so they either reach the destination or come back to the Commission’s office.”
Dr S K Jand, Registrar GADVASU who is also the Information Officer said, “We had refused to give information to Dr Grewal after consulting a lawyer. It is true that we have not received any of the Commission’s notices. We will do as the Commission says, but the orders should come to us directly.”