Right to Rebuke allowed by CIC
Do the Appellate authority has any right to scold/reprimand/rebuke the appellant or info seeker apart from deciding on RTI issues?
Yes he can according to CIC.
The appellate authorities are given a virtual Carte Blanche on this by the CIC.
This funny aspect was decided by CIC Shri Habibullah in a decision last year.
According to him an appellate authority can admonish an appellant using polite language. But he was silent on the various circumstances under which this admonition can occur. It is left to the conscience of the AA to what extent he can go with his admonition.
Surprisingly his order does not dwell with any admonition to the PIOs as if PIOs are above admonitions.
Let's hope these official should not go beyond decency and start admonishing the info seekers in every go. That will create a sad story.
A part of the decision is given below.
The issues before us in this appeal were:
1) the disclosure of file noting in three files.
2) Misbehaviour of Appellate authority with appellant
The disclosure sought having been done; the cause of action now abates. On the question of misbehaviour we cannot consider the use of polite language of reprimand as any more than an admonition, which is well within the discretion of a presiding officer in a quasi-judicial proceeding. The appeal therefore stands disposed of.
Announced in the hearing. Notice of this decision be given free of cost to the parties.