Corpn. officer fined for ignoring RTI query

Arappor Iyakkam moved the Information Commission against the PIO over its application

The Tamil Nadu State Information Commission levied a penalty of ₹25,000 against an Greater Chennai Corporation Executive Engineer for failure to give information under the RTI Act.

According to a release from Arapoor Iyakkam convener Jayaram Venkatesan, the Commission had ordered disciplinary action against the Superintendent and Executive Engineer, Bus Route Roads Department of the Corporation.

Arappor Iyakkam had got an order from the State Information Commission for a penalty of ₹25,000 on the Public Information Officer of Bus Route Roads Department Executive Engineer Victor Gnanaraj to be deducted from his salary.

The Commission also ordered disciplinary action on both the then PIO and Executive Engineer and Appellate Authority and Superintending Engineer Vijayakumar of the Bus Route Roads Department.

Arappor Iyakkam filed a RTI with the Bus Route Roads Department on July 31, 2018, seeking information on the list of roads and the rates finalised before and after negotiation.

However, the information and first appeal were rejected and Arappor Iyakkam filed a second appeal with the Tamil Nadu State Information Commission.

When the matter came up for hearing on November 5, 2019, the State Information Commission ordered PIO Victor Gnanaraj to give the information. But it was not given and when the matter came up for hearing on December 10, 2019, Information Commissioner G. Murugan ordered the PIO to furnish the information before 4 p.m. on the same day. However, at 4 p.m., no such information was provided.

The Information Commissioner ordered a show-cause notice to the PIO and the Appellate Authority asking them why they should not be penalised and why disciplinary action should not be taken against them for not providing information. There was no subsequent order from the Information Commission on the penalty.

Second appeal

Following another second appeal case hearing before the same Information Commissioner during January and February 2020, the Information Commissioner told that orders had been issued but that the order was a matter of communication between the Information Commission and the Corporation, and the appellant did not have any rights to get the order. Following an argument that the appellant is entitled to a copy of the order, the Information Commissioner agreed to send the copy of the order. However, Arapoor Iyakkam did not get any copy.

Therefore, on February 14, Arapoor Iyakkam filed an RTI query with the Information Commission to furnish the final order in the second appeal SA/C/1096/2019, the release said.

Source: Read Full Article