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Thread: Full panel of CIC to decide on documents on Netaji

  1. Full panel of CIC to decide on documents on Netaji

    Kolkata, April 2 (PTI): The full bench of the Central Information Commission will decide whether documents consulted by enquiry panels probing the mysterious disappearance of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose should be disclosed, Information Commissioner A N Tiwari has said.

    Tiwari conveyed this recently to Mission Netaji, a Delhi-based organisation campaigning to access information on the disappearance of the icon of the freedom movement, while hearing its appeal in this regard.

    Giving a "final chance" to the Union home ministry to come clear on the issue, Tiwari asked it to provide an adequate explanation from the ministerial level on why documents sought by Mission Netaji could not be made public.

    All documents on the basis of which the two inquiry panels led by Shah Nawaz Khan (1956) and G D Khosla (1970-74) made their decisions have been kept secret by the government.

    Tiwari's directive came close on the heels of Information Commissioner O P Kejriwal directing the external affairs ministry to provide Mission Netaji's Anuj Dhar copies of its correspondence with the Sovet Union and later Russia on Netaji's disappearance.

    "If adequate explanations are not provided, the Commission will be compelled to direct the disclosure of all documents in question," Kejriwal said.

    Last year, Home Minister Shivraj Patil announced in Parliament that investigations conducted by Khan and Khosla were more credible than that of Justice M K Mukherjee who headed another panel that probed Netaji's disappearance.

    Following Patil's announcement, Mission Netaji's Sayantan Dasgupta filed a petition with the home ministry to seek copies of all documents examined by the Khan and Khosla panels.

    "Our case has been that these enquiries made selective use of evidence to arrive at the conclusion to suit the government's view that Netaji died in Taipei," Dasgupta claimed.

    In response, the home ministry refused to provide documents, taking recourse to secion 8 1(a) of the RTI Act, which exempts the release of information information which can "prejudicially affect sovereignty and integrity of India", "relations with a foreign state" or "lead to incitement of offence".

    Dasgupta then filed a complaint with the CIC. In its first hearing in October last year, home ministry officials said they were not aware of the documents examined by the earlier panels as they, unlike the Mukherjee Commission, had not appended any list of exhibits.

    Tiwari then directed Dasgupta to revise the original application to demand specific documents. Accordingly, Mission Netaji filed a revised petition with a list of 202 documents used as exhibits by the Khosla Commission in its arguments section.

    At the latest hearing last week, home ministry officials were to appear with the papers but instead came with a secret note from Home Secretary V K Duggal, who has since retired.

    Irked at the letter that reiterated the same arguments using Section 8 1(a), Tiwari said: "The issue is far too important to be decided in an ad hoc manner at the level of the home secretary. I am not prepared to allow an omnibus recourse to Section 8 1(a)."

    The CIC assured the appellant that Indians had every right to have full information on their hero.

    The Hindu News Update Service

  2. Kindly post this separtely. It is a different matter and it will get lost in this thread. Already, media has overlooked it.

  3. Kindly follow these links to get the full story.

    :::MISSION NETAJI::: CIC rejects Govt stance on Russia correspondence papers

    :::MISSION NETAJI::: Full CIC bench to hear MHA-Netaji secret papers case

  4. Re: Full panel of CIC to decide on documents on Netaji

    Disclose Netaji panel papers, CIC tells MHA

    The Central Information Commission on Thursday directed the Ministry of Home Affairs to disclose relevant papers relating to commission of inquiry set up to probe death of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose within three months.

    This direction is in response to an appeal filed by Shri Sayantan Dasgupta of New Delhi. The full details of the decision is already uploaded under the "decisions" section of our portal.

  5. Re: Full panel of CIC to decide on documents on Netaji

    It is a landmark decision for the RTI movement in India.

    Please check out Justice for Subhas blog for some details.

    This was a full bench order. The hearing took place on June 5. Sayantan, Chandrachur and I put up our cases and MHA side was represented by 3 officers, including a Joint Secy handling the Interanal Security division of the MHA.

    The MHA has something like 70,000 pages on the case. I hope it will make the skeptics to take note. And there are many more classified files with PMO, MEA and other ministries. All for a "dead man" and a "dead issue"?

  6. Re: Full panel of CIC to decide on documents on Netaji

    Thank you Anuj. After seeing the CIC decision, I was waiting for you to post the matter in our forum, till late in the evening. Since nothing came from your side, I went in for a two sentence posting in the hope that you will amplify it with additional info. I am happy, you have not belied my expectations. The blogspot is interesting and informative, especially about the man who put the MHA in a spot.

  7. Re: Full panel of CIC to decide on documents on Netaji

    Here is some additional info. It's from the CIC directive itself. The following are MHA's resons to not to give us the relevant papers:

    That the documents sought under the RTI Act are voluminous and top secret in nature and may lead to chaos in the country if disclosed.

    That the information asked for is more than 20 years old and as such, its disclosure is exempted under section 8(3) of the RTI Act. They also submitted that the committee appointed to go into the disappearance part of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose has come to the conclusion that Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose died in an air crash. It was tabled before the Parliament and is in public domain. So, there is nothing that the Government hides in this respect. They also submitted that the findings of the Committee are also in public domain.

    That apart from the 202 exhibits which the complainant had requested, there are 308 more exhibits running into 70,000 pages and, therefore, to give copies of all of those are a Herculean task.

    That the decision concerning disclosure has to be taken at the highest level and that they cannot say any thing on their own.

    I wonder what the highest level is? Sonia Gandhi?!

  8. #8
    C J Karira
    Blog Entries
    Rep Power

    Re: Full panel of CIC to decide on documents on Netaji


    I have read the full case on your blog , the CIC site and various press reports.
    The MHA is repeating the same thing, again and again, from the beggining. They do not seem to have any new arguments. These are just typical "delaying" and "stalling" tactics.

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