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    Question Can PIO ask aplicant to appear before himself insted of giving required information to applicant under RTI act?


    One of my friend has filed and application before District Collector (PIO) sekinking information about some querry regarding govt. policies to provid residancial plot to disabled people at concessional rate. The PIO has called the applicant to appear before himsef in connection of his application.
    I want sugestion, view and opinion form this forum is that Is this act of PIO is according as per provision of RTI act? Has applicant binded to apper before PIO? If not, what action to be taken against PIO.


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    Re: Can PIO ask aplicant to appear before himself insted of giving required information to applicant under RTI act?


    Hi Kaushal,
    whether your friend appears in person or through his legal rep, the PIO is bound to give you a formal written dated, signed, stamped, authenticated reply [including names and designations of officials who prepared the info sheet] to your RTI query within the stipulated time frame. One to one verbal addressing of the RTI is not acceptable.

    During a RTI hearing a PIO gave all the information wanted verbally in front of the CIC and gave the petitioner a hard copy of what he had said. The learned Judge, first asked the PIO why such a thing did not happen within the time frame and ordered the PIO to initiate action against all officials who were at fault and asked him to submit a status report. He also ordered the complainant not to accept the info sheet from the PIO without his signature and seal. When the PIO offered to put his signature and seal on the piece of paper there and then, the Judge took a strong exception and rebuked the PIO for carrying his official seal with him. A mention of this was made in the proceedings report and the PIO was asked to mail his reply by reg. post to the applicant from his office.

    In this case, The DC is possibly be trying to buy time to reply to your query.

    Sunaabh

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    C J Karira
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    Re: Can PIO ask aplicant to appear before himself insted of giving required information to applicant under RTI act?


    Has the PIO asked the applicant to come personally in writing or verbally ?

    If it is in writing, ask the PIO (also in writing) as to under which section of the RTI Act 2005, is the PIO calling the applicant to come personally ?
    Ask for certified copies of extracts of RTI Act and Rules and Regulations which empower the PIO to ask the applicant to come personally.
    Ask the PIO to give a reasoned order for personal appearance.

    If it is verbal request, ask the PIO to put it in writing with a reasoned order.

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    Re: Can PIO ask aplicant to appear before himself insted of giving required information to applicant under RTI act?



    Similarly I applied some information from BSNL and PIO BSNL ordered me to visit vigilance cell to inspect the rules and regulations on the subject. In first appeal the appeallate authority decided similar manner. I did not make a 2nd appeal for my own reasons.
    Last edited by ganpat1956; 12-02-08 at 07:19 PM.

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    Re: Can PIO ask aplicant to appear before himself insted of giving required information to applicant under RTI act?


    The answer is "NO" He shsould ignore the direction whether oral or written and wait for the prescribed period. In case pf non-receipt of ther information within the prescribed period he should make a First Appeal. An applicant is not required to attend the hearing of the PIO under any circumstances

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    Re: Can PIO ask aplicant to appear before himself insted of giving required information to applicant under RTI act?


    If the information asked for is voluminous or if the record is so old that it may get mutilated or spoiled while making copies, the PIO may suggest to the information seeker to come and inspect the documents in question personally. But the order should be a reasoned one putting forth the reasons for asking someone to come in person. If it is not a reasoned one you can insist the PIO to provide the info within the stipulated time. In that case even the time spent in correspondence between you and the PIO will count for reckoning the period.

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    Re: Can PIO ask aplicant to appear before himself insted of giving required information to applicant under RTI act?


    I think we are examining the legal aspects. Good behavior on the part of PIO has no limit. I have an experience where a PIO has called for the file in my presence. He has found a spare copy available in the file. Pulled it out and given to me. He told me that there is no requirement of an RTI application unless I insist as the required copy has been given. Such incidence cannot be a matter of fact while we discuss the legal aspects.

    In this case if the record is likely to get mutilated and destroyed he can reply quotting Section 7(9) and get away without furnishing the information.Only if the PIO is too nice he may suggest as stated by you. But the issue here is "whether a PIO can order an applicant to attend to his hearing or something to that effect". My answer is NO.

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    Re: Can PIO ask aplicant to appear before himself insted of giving required information to applicant under RTI act?


    One of my friends had sought information from the PIO of her own department relating to some discrepencies for not including her name in the DPC and had asked for reasons for not giving her the due increments in time. The reply given by the PIO was incorrect and the PIO wanted her to have a look at all the available files and find for a answer by herself so she made an appeal before the AA in writing. Now that the AA has given a reply and asked her to come and meet him in his office for discussions.

    Would like to know whether it is a good practice as per the RTI Act for the AA to call the applicant in person for negotiation/discussion on the information sought for.

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