RTI Act: SIC admonishes MCC joint commissioner

A complete information under RTI Act was sent to Krishnappa on November 10, after four months of his application

 
The background of the case is that CPI(M) leader K Krishnappa had submitted two applications seeking information  with regard to the implementation of schemes under the 18% reservation for Dalits under the provisions of RTI Act on July 10, 2009. However, though the RTI Act, 2005 stipulates Public Information Officers (PIO) to reply RTI requests within 30 days, MCC officials replied Krishnappa’s request only on September 5. At the same time, Krishnappa found the reply given to him incomplete and returned the same to the joint commissioner on September 20.

Meanwhile, as there was no response from the respondent within the stipulated period of 30 days, Krishnappa also had filed a complaint to the SIC on August 10 under Section 18(1) of the RTI Act.

Following this, when the Commission issued summons, MCC Joint Commissioner Gadkar stated in his reply that there was delay in furnishing information to the applicant, since he was busy with urgent work such as the distribution of election ID and water supply bills. Finally, a complete information was sent to Krishnappa on November 10, after four months of his application.

After going through the complaint filed by the petitioner K Krishnappa, SIC noted undue delay in furnishing the proper information. In an admonition letter (copy of which was made available to Deccan Herald), the State Information Commissioner K A Thippeswamy warned MCC joint commissioner “to be cautious and prompt in dealing with the requests for information received under the RTI Act, 2005. Any such lapses in future in dealing with the requests for information filed under the RTI Act, suitable recommendation will be made to the Secretary to Government, Urban Development Department and also to the Director of Municipal Administration for incorporation in the annual confidential report about lapses apart from levying penalty.”

The Commission found that the simple information which is available on the progress report of the MCC was not furnished to applicant in time.

‘I am not aware’

When contacted, MCC Joint Commissioner Gadkar told Deccan Herald that he was not aware of the admonition letter.

“Since I am the appellate authority in MCC, applicant Krishnappa could have approached me before filing complaint to the SIC. I had already served notices to concerned PIOs soon after SIC issued summons on October 29,” Gadkar added.

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