CIC tells MHA to give info
As reported by Sonal Kellogg in asianage.com on 20 February 2008:
The Asian Age - Enjoy the difference
CIC tells MHA to give info
New Delhi, Feb. 19: The Central Information Commission has asked the ministry of home affairs on Monday to furnish information to Mr Maninderjit Singh Bitta, who has been a target of several terrorist attacks.
Mr Bitta asked for information for what the assessment made by the review committee in his case after a terrorist attack on him regarding his security and whether there was any political pressure on him.
He also asked why his security was withdrawn and under whose assessment.
Mr Bitta asked for this information but the central public information officer Vandana Kinni denied it under the RTO Act.
But unhappy with the refusal, Mr Bitta moved his first appeal to joint secretary A.K. Srivastava, who is the appellate authority of MHA.
Mr Srivastava in his order upheld the CPIO's decision. But he said, "... However, as you have raised certain concerns affecting your personal security, I wish to provide you the relevant information in the context of your request."
After a detailed description of the processes that went into the decisions in 1993, joint secretary, ministry of home affairs, concluded as follows: "There was neither any decision not withdraw the security cover from you, nor its de facto withdrawal. Your security arrangements were further reviewed in this ministry subsequent to the attack on you and further strengthened, whereby a higher categorised security cover was provided, which arrangements continue till date."
But Mr Bitta said while appealing to the CIC in his covering letter, "In the above context, I would like to know why then I had been served with the order dated September 6, 1993 for the withdrawal of the ITBP guards deployed for my security. This clearly stands in contradiction with the information that "there was no de-facto withdrawal of security cover provided to you after August 5, 1993'."
The full decision of the CIC is attached herewith.
Re: CIC tells MHA to give info
As reported by Special Correspondent in hindu.com on 23 February 2008:
The Hindu : National : Judiciary’s help sought to expose conspiracy
Judiciary’s help sought to expose conspiracy
CHANDIGARH: Chairman of the All-India Anti-Terrorist Front (AIATF) M.S. Bitta on Friday said that he would seek judicial intervention to expose the conspiracy of unscrupulous elements in politics and administration that have carried out “political murders” for quite some time.
Talking to reporters here, Mr. Bitta said that he would approach an appropriate court, after inspecting the records of the Union Home Ministry, as had been decreed by the Central Information Commission. His previous requests to inspect the records regarding withdrawal of the security cover to him had been rejected by the Ministry, which cited that intelligence and security matters did not fall within the ambit of the Right to Information (RTI) Act.
In response to Mr. Bitta’s query, the Home Ministry had written, “Your security arrangements were reviewed by this ministry subsequent to the attack on you and further strengthened, whereby a higher category security cover was provided and arrangements continue till date.”
After inspecting the records, Mr. Bitta said, he would approach the appropriate court to seek a thorough probe into the role of the various officers and politicians who took these controversial decisions.