If First Appellate Authority claims that applicant has expressed satisfaction with the information furnished before the appellate authority, does the Appellant is precluded from preferring a second appeal on the same RTI application.? The Central Information Commission rejected the claim and directed the FAA to again hear the applicant afresh after affording an opportunity of hearing.
The Commission relied on Section–102 of The Indian Evidence Act, 1872 which is extracted hereinafter:
102. On whom burden of proof lies.-The burden of proof in a suit or proceeding lies on that person who would fail if no evidence at all were given on either side.
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Central Information Commission in one of the decision opined that “as far as possible give the appellant including the third party, if any, an opportunity of hearing specially if he so requests, without forgetting that the essence of RTI Act is to provide complete, correct and timely information to the appellant.” You can read the RTI Act here!
CIC further states that “It is needless to say that rendering an opportunity of hearing to the parties is a fundamental principle of jurisprudence. It is conducive to fairness and transparency and accords with the principles of natural justice. An opportunity of hearing to the parties also brings greater clarity to the adjudicating authorities.” Read more ›
While Public Information Officer denied the information on a question asked regarding steps taken for implementation of the DOPT guidelines regarding proactive disclosure of tours of officials of the rank of Joint Secretaries and above to implement and copies of all tour orders issued and details of TA/DA paid for each of Joint Secretaries of Central Vigilance Commission by quoting Section 7(9) of the RTI Act, however, on the other hand First Appellate Authority (FAA) has brought in a totally new provision by denying information u/s 8(1)(g) by quoting a CIC decision. FAA denied the information without giving a hearing to the RTI Applicant. What are your views? Use the comments in the article to post. You can discuss it at our forum too.
The Appellant had argued in front of the CIC that the FAA by doing this, has brought in a totally new provision for denial of information which is not tenable as he was not allowed an opportunity to question this and he was not given a hearing. He further submitted that the CPIO vide letter dt 2.8.13 has already provided information relating to foreign and domestic travel of officers of the rank of JS and above. When such information has already been provided, he would be satisfied if similar information is provided in respect of the remaining staff also. Read more ›
First Appellate Authority decided the case without inviting RTI Applicant for hearing. Central Information Commission remanded back the RTI case to First Appellate Authority (FAA) with directions to decide the appeal after affording an opportunity to the appellant for hearing. Not giving personal hearing to the appellant to make their submissions is against the principles of natural justice and even the provisions of Section 19 (1) of the RTI Act 2005. Thus, it is not legally tenable. (Learn how to file RTI Online here with our simple guide)
Earlier the CPIO vide his response had simply denied the required information to the appellant by taking a plea under Section 11 of the RTI Act 2005 without mentioning as to whether the comments of the Third Party was invited or not. Surprisingly, FAA mentioned that the procedure laid down relating to third party has been followed by the CPIO and the parties concerned have given in writing that the applicant has family disputes and business rivalry with them and as per the Section 11 of the RTI Act 2005, no such information may be given to him. CIC recorded that “the views of CPIO and FAA are in a divergent direction. As such, these are not legally tenable.” Read more ›