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CIC issues stern warning against threatening RTI applicants

Last updated: 20 July, 2011
New Delhi, Jul 20 (PTI) 19:08 IST

The Central Information Commission has issued a stern warning against threatening RTI applicants, saying it would get ''all forces of the government'' to punish those who indulge in such acts.

The case relates to a poor, elderly woman Durga who was trying to get a ration card for the last two years but despite making rounds of Delhi Government's office, she failed to get one.

When she filed an RTI application to know the status of her card, a vigilance committee official allegedly threatened her. "The appellant states... she was approached by Mr. Garba who is a member of Vigilance Committee who came to her house and scolded her for filing the RTI application. The Commission warns everyone that if any threats are issued to RTI applicants the Commission would get all forces of the Government to punish those who threaten RTI applicants," Information Commissioner Shailesh Gandhi said.

Durga who had applied for BPL ration card in 2009 did not get it even after two years and was asked to apply again. When she sis apply again, she was informed that the card cannot be made now since they have been stopped.

"If entitlements cannot be provided to the extremely poor all the pronouncement of the government becomes meaningless," Gandhi pointed out. The Commissioner not only allowed a compensation of Rs 3000 to the woman but also imposed a maximum penalty of Rs 25,000 on the Public Information Officer for not furnishing information to her in the mandatory one month period.

"The Commission directs the Food Commissioner to look into this matter and ensure that the BPL Card of Mrs Durga is sent to her before 30 August 2011 and inform the Commission about this by August 30, 2011," Gandhi ordered.

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