Petrol pump scam: Govt to answer RTI query
As reported in IndiaInfo March 04, 2008
[Source : PTI]

New Delhi: The Union Home Ministry has agreed to share details with an RTI applicant on its decision not to grant sanction to prosecute former Petroleum Minister and senior Congress leader Captain Satish Sharma in the petrol pump allotment scam.

The Ministry which was dragged to the Central Information Commission (CIC) over a Right to Information application filed by Sandeep Garg, said it was willing to answer his query as there were inhibitions in doing so after a case related to the matter was disposed off by the Supreme Court.

Earlier, replying to Garg's plea of August 30, 2006 seeking details about the charges framed by the CBI against Sharma, the Ministry had refused to give details on the grounds that a writ petition in the matter was pending before the apex court.

However, in response to CIC's appeal notice on January 14 this year, its Joint Secretary K Skandan said, "The issue of sanction for prosecution of Captain Satish Sharma was examined in the Ministry in consultation with the Department of Legal Affairs and a decision was taken by the Government not to grant sanction for his prosecution."

Noting that the related civil writ petition in the apex court has now been disposed of, the Ministry had said that it had no objection in allowing Garg an inspection of the file where Captain Satish Sharma's case was processed.

Chief Information Commissioner Wajahat Habibullah disposed off Garg's appeal with a direction to the Home Ministry to allow him inspection of the related documents within 10 days. Habibullah, however, found the Ministry at fault for seeking exemption from divulging the information under section 8(1)(b) of the RTI Act, that allowed withholding information to avoid contempt of court.