``Right Every Wrong`` Satyamev Jayte.
M.V.Ruparelia, A503 Rashmi Utsav, Near Jangid Estate & Vijay Park, Mira Road (East) Dist. Thane. 401107. M. 09821732855. E/Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
To August 30.2012.
Ms Anuradha Chagti, Director, DOPT,
Ministry of Personnel, Pensions & Public Grievances,
North Block, New Delhi-110101.
Sub: Policy issues in respect of RTI Act, 2005.
Ref: i) My letter dt 21-5-12 to President of India sent to your office on 4-6-12.
ii) DOPAT/E/2012/00426 dt 25-5-12 forwarded by you to CIC on 21-6-12.
iii) DOPAT/E/2012/00495 dt 12-6-12.
iv) DOPAT/E/2012/00221 dt 20-3-12 & ARNPG/E/2012/00111 dt 20-3-12.
1.My letter dt 21-5-12 to President is not yet replied by anyone even after more than 3 months. This was required to be examined in detail by your Ministry, as CIC Office, a Public Authority under Government of India is not following any orders issued by competent authority viz DOPT. This was a specific complaint with full details and specific 2 examples and it was emphatically reported to President that this Public Office and Information Commissioner are not following any rules and not even acting as per RTI Act, 2005 and instructions, guidelines issued by competent authority viz DOPT. Instead of examining at your end, it has been forwarded to the defaulter for giving direct reply to us. No reply has come even after more than 2 months and no reply can be expected from them ever! Instead of repeating whole matter again, I request you to examine the entire representation to President dt 21-5-12 thoroughly and take appropriate action in the interest of Citizens and the Government, as declared goal of Government is: `"Democracy requires an informed citizenry and transparency of information which are vital to its functioning and also to contain corruption and to hold Governments and their instrumentalities accountable to the governed".
2. As your Ministry is spending lot on Training of all concerned with RTI Act and encouraging Citizens through media etc to use RTI, we shall be thankful, if you kindly give some training/guidance to us in respect of the following:-
i) Please, advise for sake of our knowledge whether Offices (NOT CICs themselves, may be they are treated as Judges and permitted to work, as they wish, as in 2 cases brought out in letter to President!) of CIC & President`s Secretariat (NOT the President) are Public Authorities under Government of India and governed by rules & guidelines laid down by DOPT. A copy of President`s Secretariat’s letter no. 1551/RTI/12/10-11 dt 2-8-12 is enclosed, which says that they have no policy for dealing with grievances received from public and representations are just forwarded. Such forwarding can be done by a lower grade clerk, if each representation to the highest authority of the Country is not to be read, examined by officer of appropriate level with proper notings etc in Secretariat and decision taken as to what action is to be taken and then only forwarded to an appropriate level officer with proper directives and target date by which reply to applicant be given. Some procedure is necessary in every office. This may be established in both these offices.
ii) As per Gazette Notification for Central Information Commission (Appeal Procedure) Rules, 2005 as per Sec 27(2) e of RTI Act, 2005 and Guidelines issued by DOPT under their Memorandum no. 1/4/2009-IR dt 5-10-09, the Commission has to decide an Appeal/Complaint by inspection of documents produced by the Applicant etc. In these 2 cases, IC had not examined any papers produced with IInd Appeal & Rejoinder (sent by E/Mail & Registered post many days before hearing) and gave speaking orders without examining or mentioning any documents/arguments by applicant and just repeated the incorrect stand taken by CPIO at initial stage that ``It is understood that information on point no.1 & 2 has been provided by Shri G.Subramanian, US & CPIO.`` and similar incorrect remarks for all points!! Representation dt 16-4-12 against this decision dt 12-4-12 is also not considered and it has been advised under letter no. CIC/SM/A/2011/000611/SG dt 3-5-12 that`` the Commission has decided not to take any further action on this matter. The matter is now closed at the commission`s end. ‘This highhandedness, anarchy of not following any rules or principles of Natural Justice and not giving opportunity of hearing require to be examined by your Ministry and remedial action taken. Number of representations received from entire Country against CIC and note from RTI India Web Site sent with representation to President will indicate the necessity of doing something for this anarchy.
iii) Kindly, guide us as to what can be done to get reply to our representations of Public Interest pertaining to Senior Citizens in terms of Para 66 of Office Manual. When we take up non-reply under RTI requesting for status position of receipt and when reply will be given, stock reply is given that status position does not include position in respect of reply under RTI Act and we do not get reply at all even after representing to Ministry of Public Grievance and/ or President. Kindly, advise the Ministry/Authority to whom, we can approach to help get reply and whether Status Position asked under RTI Application includes the reply or at least the position as to when reply will be given as laid down in para 66 of Office Manual.
iv) As per Notification by Postal Department, nominated Post Masters are CPIOs of all government departments, Public Sector Organizations and Commissions. According to Guide lines by your Ministry, there is no harm to give information, if Application is not accompanied by Fee of Rs 10. Remitting of Fee of Rs 10 & Applications, Appeals to nominated Post Masters is a very good help to Citizens but CPIO of CIC does not accept fee paid to Nominated Post Master for Application. Your Ministry should consider the difficulties of Citizens and issue guidelines that such megre payment of fee to Nominated Post Masters must be accepted by all and Applications treated as valid under RTI Act.
3.Your Portal, while giving Status Position, does not give original complaint or indication as to how to see it. This may be got rectified. We shall be obliged, if copy of our recording for DOPAT/E/2012/00495 dt 12-6-12; DOPAT/E/2012/00221 dt 20-3-12 & ARNPG/E/2012/00111 dt 20-3-12 are sent to us, as we do not have them.
Thanking You with a hope that Justice will be done,