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Thread: Can I directly appraoch High Court for getting information under RTI?

  1. Can I directly appraoch High Court for getting information under RTI?

    It is so frustrating to find the Information Officer, the office to whom I am approaching keep tossing me from one office to another. My question is, can I directly approach High court under RTI to get the information?

  2. It seems to me a very important question, and hence would like to elaborate upon this issue in details.

    Section 23 of the RTI act states: No Court shall entertain any suit, application or other proceeding in respect of any order made under this Act and no such order shall be called in question otherwise than by way of an appeal under this Act.

    The bar of jurisdiction for the Courts is general as is normally provided in several enactments. Where the Act seeks to prohibit interference of the Court in the proceedings pending before the competent authorities till their final disposal it makes a declaration to that effect.

    It is so because, what is required to be done under the Act is a matter of a special nature to be dealt with by the authorities specially invested with jurisdiction and which are particularly trained to implement the several provisions of the Act. Moreover, if the interference of the court is permitted the very implementation of the Act will be unsettled. Moreover, the orders of the ultimate authorities under this Act are made final. Therefore, the Act provides that anybody affected by any order made by any authority shall seek only the remedies available under this Act.

    The bar of jurisdiction applies to all courts including the High Court to the extent of its original or appellate jurisdiction but not the extraordinary jurisdiction exercisable under Article 226. Here too the High court may not entertain any application under Article 226 unless the applicant is found to have exhausted all the remedies under the Act.

    The remedies available under the Act to the citizens who is aggrieved by anything done or not done by authorities under the Act are:

    In the first instance, there is right to appeal to the higher officer who is above the Central Public Information Officer or the State Public Information Officer.

    He has the right to file a second appeal against the order of higher officer, to the Central Information Commission or the State Information commission as the case may be.

    The aggrieved party has the right to skip over these appeals and directly approach the concerned Information commission which has all the powers to deal with the matter treating it as an independent representation. However, as the practice goes, the CIC also has asked to exhaust all the regular channels before one approaches CIC.

    While that being so, in respect of the citizens right to approach the High Court for any relief, it is necessary for the parties to exhaust the remedies available under the Act so that the parties and the High Court may know what the stand of the authorities has been in deciding the issues.

    Thus you may not approach directly the High court, for getting information under RTI Act.

  3. Even one appraoch the High Court the order by High court will be inform of directive to provide information within a said period, failing with contempt of court will be there.
    During contempt proceeding the person will be given oppertunity as per Principle of Natural Justice to explain the cause of delay. After which a fine or penalty acn be imposed by the court.

    RTI provides mandatory fine for non furnishing of information.

    More over the route to High Court is moer tedious than the RTI. In high court the application has to be in legal format in double spacing and a lot of other specification.

  4. Thanks Kushal
    Your explanation is great and this needs to be read by each and every member of this community because in most simplest way you have educaed not only about H.C's RTI jurisdiction but about 226 aslo.
    You can infact turn out to be one of finest law Professor.
    I agree with you High Court will not entertain any such application directly even for a moment.

  5. Kushal Sir,
    This is the master peice of information you ahd provided. Must be sticked.

  6. #6

    Re: Can I directly appraoch High Court for getting information under RTI?

    Hello kushal ji,
    West bengal Information commission is sitting toght over my appeal for the last 3 months.Its web site is in complete and e-mails and reminders are not being that case can not a writ of mandamus be issued by Calcutta High court to direct CIC WB provide information? please suggest.

  7. #7
    victor mecwan
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    Thumbs up Re: Can I directly appraoch High Court for getting information under RTI?

    Infact, the RTI act needs to be implemented FIRST.
    1.Approach the CPIO first. Incase, of refusal/any grievance
    2.First Appeal to the Appelate Authority,and in case of any grievances,
    3.Second Appeal to the CIC.
    4.If this is followed and if still the grievance persists, High Court is OPEN.
    But to rush to the High Court,at the first instance without using the provisions of the RTI Act will be UNFAIR and IPMPROPER.

  8. Re: Can I directly appraoch High Court for getting information under RTI?

    It is always said by CIC that one should first exhaust the proper channel. They same applies to HC.
    I have always send by application by regd A.D
    why don't u send ur RTI application to PIO C/o H.C
    or deposit ur application to Post office and let the Postman despatch on behalf of u.


    RTI INDIA: Invoking Your Rights. We provide easy ways to request, analyze & share Government documents by use of Right to Information and by way of community support.

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