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    Delay Tactics by PIO


    I submitted an RTI application to the PIO along with the fees giving full name and contact details including postal address, e-mail, office and residential phone numbers and mobile number.
    As I did not receive the information within 30 days I filed the first appeal for deemed refusal with the Appellate Authority. I have not received any communication from the Appellate Authority though more than 30 days have passed.
    Suddenly I received a letter from the PIO [appears to be a backdated letter] that my application cannot be processed as I had not submitted "Proof of Identity".
    At no place in the RTI Act 2005 does it say that the applicant has to submit Proof of Identity. Only contact details are required to be mentioned in the application which I have fully given.
    It appears that the PIO is employing delay tactics and trying to deny me the information. What should I do?
    Since more than 60 days have passed since receipt of the application by the PIO and the Appellate Authority has not responded for more than 30 days after the first appeal should I file a second appeal with the CIC for deemed refusal?
    Or should I send "Proof of Identity" to the PIO, set the clock backward and bear further delay? If yes, what Proof of Identity should I send? Is the PIO justified in asking Proof of Identity after so much time or is he just employing delay tactics? Should I make a complaint to the CIC?


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  2. #2
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    Re: Delay Tactics by PIO


    PIO has no business to ask for your identity. You can lodge complaint with CIC/SCIC on this point only and prefer second appeal on receipt of reply from PIO.
    It takes each of us to make difference for all of us.

  3. #3
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    Re: Delay Tactics by PIO


    infogirl,

    Did the PIO ask you for "proof of identity" or "proof of citizenship" ?

    If he asked for "proof of identity", I can assure you that I have never come across a case where a applicant has been asked to submit proof of identity before he is given information. The only situation where a PIO may ask for proof of identity is when the applicant makes a application for inspection and then goes to inspect personally, the PIO may like to make sure that it is the same person...one who has applied and one who has come for inspection.
    If this is what he has asked for, just to attend to your RTI application and provide information, please ignore it.

    "proof of citizenship" is another matter.

    Sec 3 gives the right only to "citizens" for access to information.
    But nowhere in the RTI Act, the PIO has been given the powers to ask for proof of citizenship.
    There are just 2 cases on the CIC website where the applicant has complained that the PIO has asked him proof of citizenship. In both the cases, CIC has conveniently ignored this issue but dealt with other issues listed in the appeals.

    If you look at it logically, a vast majority of Indian citizens cannot prove their Indian citizenship because there is no concept in India of a "Citizens Register" or a "National ID Card".
    Driving License cannot be a proof because even foreigners can get a drivers license in India.
    PAN card is also being issued to foreigners.
    The procedure for application/allotment of Ration card in Maharashtra (Nagpur District Collectorate : F. A.Q.)
    also does not say anything about Ration Card being issued only to citizens.
    A Voter ID card can be a proof of citizenship (since only citizens are allowed to vote) but what happens if the applicant is below 18 years and he is not entitled to vote so does not have a voter id card.
    Therefore the only document that can prove your citizenship is a Indian Passport (only issued to citizens).
    How many citizens have a passport ?
    (I am pointing out all this, so that you have your arguments ready in case this "citizenship" issue comes up in the Second Appeal)

    It seems to be clearly a delaying tactic. In any case, how did the PIO suddenly decide to ask for proof of identity/citizenship 60 days after receiving your application ? If he was really serious, he could have asked you for the proof as soon as he received your RTI application. This clearly shows that the PIO had a malafide intent of not supplying you the information.

    You have already completed the process of First Appeal and no reply received.

    Go for Complaint under Sec 18 to CIC.
    Ask for Penalty under Sec 20 in your "plea"/ "prayer"
    Second Appeal must be made within 90 days of the date when reply was supposed to be received from the PIO.

    For details about filing Second Appeal with CIC, please read the following very carefully before you start drafting the Second Appeal:

    http://www.rtiindia.org/forum/1089-c...ns-2007-a.html

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    Re: Delay Tactics by PIO



    Second Appeal must be made within 90 days of the date when reply was supposed to be received from the PIO.

    As per 19(3) of RTI Act,05, a second appeal against the decision under sub section (1) shall lie within 90 days etc. So, I think that second appeal must be made within 90 days of the date when decision of the 1st appeal was supposed to be received or was actually received from the concerned AA ; . not within 90 days on receiving the reply of PIO ,or otherwise as mentioned.

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    Re: Delay Tactics by PIO


    If I am in your position I will sent a copy of any available documents which can establish cityzenship to the PIO lest he get an opportunity to deny the information on this pretest. Simultaneously prefer the second appeal/Complaint immediately without mentioning anything about PIO's reply demanding your identity. In fact when you sent the proof please ensure that you do not refer PIO's reply and ensure you obtain proof of delivery of this. Let the PIO justify his act of demanding your identity. Copy of an appointment letter or anything to that effect should be suffice

  6. #6
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    Re: Delay Tactics by PIO


    Quote Originally Posted by abhijeet View Post
    Second Appeal must be made within 90 days of the date when reply was supposed to be received from the PIO.

    As per 19(3) of RTI Act,05, a second appeal against the decision under sub section (1) shall lie within 90 days etc. So, I think that second appeal must be made within 90 days of the date when decision of the 1st appeal was supposed to be received or was actually received from the concerned AA ; . not within 90 days on receiving the reply of PIO ,or otherwise as mentioned.
    Very correct.
    That was a typed in a hurry and the word "PIO" should be actually "AA"
    Thanks for pointing out this important point.

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    Re: Delay Tactics by PIO


    infogirl,

    Can you please post the sequence of dates in your case :

    Date of application
    Date your application was received by PIO (in case you have proof of that)
    Date you made First Appeal under Sec 19(1)
    Date of PIO's letter asking you for "proof of identity"
    Date on rubber stamp of postal department on the front of the envelope (date of posting)
    Date on rubber stamp of the delivery post office at the back of the envelope
    (or date of delivery to you, in case you have proof of that)

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    Re: Delay Tactics by PIO


    Thanks everyone.The PIO asked for Proof of Identity and not Proof of Citizenship.After listening to all your advice and comments I think the best option is to file a second appeal with the CIC for "deemed refusal".Can someone please explain the timeline clearly. When do the 30 days and 90 days start? How much time does the AA have to reply - 30 days or 45 days?Also is there a website giving full details of all central and state PIOs/CPIOs and AAs?Thanks for the helpful response everyone - This is really an interactive site!

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