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RTI >> Judgments >> CIC >> Exemption >> Life / Physical Safety
Supreme Court(Life / Physical Safety)/ High Courts(Life / Physical Safety)
1 02 May, 2019 Shanti Swaroop Vs. CPIO, Under Secretary, Department of Pension & Pensioner’s Welfare, New Delhi – 10003.

Information Sought
The Appellant has sought elucidation on some difference in procedure adopted by CDA in crediting pension arrears and issue of revised PPO.

It is observed from the perusal of facts on record that Appellant filed the instant RTI Application under Life & Liberty clause of RTI Act on the basis of a decision of the Commission dated 30.03.2017 wherein it was held that pension matters concern right to life as per Article 21 of the Indian Constitution. In this regard, reference shall be had of an order dated 10.04.2018 of Hon’ble Delhi High Court in the matter of SS Mahendra Kumar vs. CIC & Anr. (LPA No. 91 of 2018) wherein the following was held:

“This Court is of the opinion that there is absolutely no merit in the appeal; the appellant’s grievance with respect to the observations made by the learned Single Judge who commented that in the peculiar circumstance the claim for pension did not fall within the category of extremely urgent applications that were to be decided by the RTI Authority (within 48 hours), is in no manner erroneous.

The Court is of the opinion that though the Central Information Commission has wide discretion as to the manner of deciding what category of cases should be expedited, its wide categorization for all pension cases to need extreme expedition, may not be justified.”
The aforesaid makes it clear that not all cases of pension can be treated as though it concerns life and liberty of an individual. In the instant case, the fact that no information has been sought in the RTI Application itself negates the claim of life and liberty. Moreover, the grievance raised by the Appellant in the Second Appeal and during hearing is also outside the scope of adjudication of the Commission under RTI Act.

Appellant is advised to pursue the service related grievance through appropriate channel as suggested by the CPIO during hearing.

2 25 Jun, 2018 BK Porwal Vs PIO, Deptt of Posts

ISSUE :The applicant, facing an inquiry for sexual harassment, requested for documents relating to the inquiry. The CPIO rejected the request under sections 8(1)(d) and (g).
DECISION : By denying the information the appellant was not only harassed by the public authority but also by the CPIO. While the public authority denied him the documents which he was entitled under SHW Act of 2013, the CPIO denied them under RTI Act.
…..the Commission concludes that denial of information to the appellant was without any reasonable cause and hence liable for maximum penalty of Rs 25,000/-
The Commission also finds it a fit case to recommend the public authority to initiate disciplinary action against the CPIO.
3 31 Jul, 2017 Shyed Baleshahe Vs. PIO, Department of Posts

The RTI application dated 24-06-2016 seeking the information to provide copy of documents in file No. F4-1/2015-16 and copy of police report and copies of disciplinary action taken against the MPKBY agent and officials involved in the fraud case and copy of action taken to recover the fraud amount and others. The CPIO rejected the application as it is exempted to disclose the information under section 8(1) (h) of the RTI Act 2005. A second appeal dated 23-09-2016 has been filed by the appellant before this Commission. The Commission directs the respondent authority to provide complete information sought by the appellant, within 21 days from this date. Disposed of.
4 31 Jul, 2017 Shekhar Arvind Lonkar Vs. PIO, Department of Posts

The appellant sought certified copy/photocopy of Postal manual, copy of proof of article delivery slip, copy of reply provided by the office to the appellant’s letter dated 02/01/15. CPIO replied on 08.07.2016 stating that the information sought on point 1 and 2 cannot be furnished as they are exempted under S.8 (1) (h). FAA upheld the CPIO’s decision and stated that the information provided is sufficient. The CPIO stated that the appellant had multiple several RTI applications seeking the same information which was furnished to him numerous times. Thereafter he filed a consumer complaint against the CPIO, hence, the information was rejected under section 8 (1) (h) of RTI Act. The Commission partly accepts the contention of the CPIO that the information was denied as it was repeatedly sought by the appellant. However, it is illegal to reject an RTI request on the ground that a complaint was filed against the officer or Public Authority before any forum. It should only be rejected after examining that disclosure of information sought would seriously impede the investigation or proceedings of a case.
5 09 Dec, 2016 Ashwin Shukla vs West Central Railway, Jabalpur

Section 8(1)(g) Information the disclosure of which would endanger the life or physical safety of any person.

The Commission directed the respondents to provide information with regard to vigilance investigation conducted against the complainant and has been completed using severance clause under section 10 of the RTI Act and if so required, severe those parts which might compromise the sources of information and third party information.
6 19 Aug, 2016 Umesh Dutt Sharma Vs. RTI Cell, West Central Railway, Jabalpud

Section 8(1)(g) — Information the disclosure of which would endanger the life or physical safety of any person — the Commission held that the inquiry pertaining to the appellant had already been completed and documents relating to the same ought to be disclosed in the public domain. The disclosure of documents pertaining to action taken on complaints made to CVC/NDLS by the appellant should be provided. The Commission directed the respondent to provide the information desired by the appellant in computer typed format subsequent to following the procedure as per section 10 of the RTI Act to severe the details of the concerned officials from the relevant documents.
7 15 Jul, 2016 Vishvajit Arora vs The New India Assurance Co. Ltd., Jaipur

Section 8(1)(g) Information the disclosure of which would endanger the life or physical safety of any person.

The Commission held that since the enquiry proceedings against the appellant had been concluded and the appellant had been dismissed from service by the disciplinary authority, the legal opinion as sought by the appellant can be disclosed to the appellant after severing name, designation and undisclosable portion of the legal opinion, as per section 10(1) of the RTI Act. The CPIO is directed to provide the same to the appellant.
8 10 Jun, 2016 Sandeep Kumar vs State Bank of Patiala, Amritsar

Section 8(1)(g). Information the disclosure of which would endanger the life or physical safety of any person.

Sexual Harassment of Woman at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition & Redressal) Act, 2013. Section 16 Denying of Information. The appellant submitted an RTI application before the CPIO, State Bank of Patiala (SBP), Amritsar seeking certified copy of Enquiry Committee report on the sexual harassment at workplace against him by a lady sub staff posted in the same branch.

The Commission held that the contents of the enquiry report had been provided to the appellant. Moreover, as per section 16 of Sexual Harassment of Woman at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition & Redressal) Act, 2013 stipulate "notwithstanding anything contained in the RTI Act, 2005, the contents of the complaint made under section 9, the identity and address of the aggrieved woman, respondent and witnesses, any information relating to conciliation and inquiry proceedings, recommendations of the Internal Committee or the Local Committee, as the case may be, and the action taken by the employer or the District Officer under the provisions of this Act shall not be published, communicated or made known to the public, press and media in any manner.
9 27 Apr, 2016 Subhash Chandra Agarwal vs CPIO, Prime Minister's Office, New Delhi

Section 8(1)(g). Information the disclosure of which would endanger the life or physical safety of any person.

The Commission relied upon its earlier decision in Case No. CIC/AD/A/2012/003674/VS/06817 dated 06.052014, wherein, it had allowed the disclosure of tour details, in India and abroad, of the Minister and held that the sought for information can be provided to the appellant using suitably severability clause in section 10(1) of the RTI Act. Secondly, the petitioner is obliged under section 6(1) to file his RTI application before the CPIO of the public authority, which is the "concerned public authority”, which holds the information within the meaning of section 2(j) of the Act. A public authority which does not hold or is not related to an information sought by a petitioner, will not be obliged to provide an answer to the petitioner only for the reason that that public authority was the Apex body or the nodal office of others sub ordinate public authorities.
10 29 Feb, 2016 Sudhir Kumar Jain Vs. Ministry of Finance, Department of Financial Services, New Delhi

Section 8(1)(g) Information the disclosure of which would endanger the life or physical safety of any person

The Commission held that the respondents have not been able to justify as to how providing copies of the note sheet relating to suspension and termination order will impede the ongoing CBI enquiries and prosecution that providing the copies of file notings relating to suspension and termination of the appellant as CMD, Syndicate Bank, does not affect the process of investigation or apprehension or prosecution of offenders as claimed by the respondents and directed the CPIO to provide file notings relating to the suspension and termination of the appellant after severing any third party information and names of officials who dealt with the case as per section 10 of the RTI Act, without disclosing the background papers.
11 23 Jan, 2015 Nitin Sudhakar Pradhan Vs. CPIO, Department of Telecommunications

The appellant sought certified copies from some files. CPIO allowed inspection but denied providing copies on the ground that the documents were provided by a security agency – the third party- objected to the disclosure of the documents.

The question is whether documents in respect of which inspection was allowed can be denied when copies of the same were insisted by the applicant.

The CIC relying on the judgement of High Court of Bombay (in which the court held that merely because inspection of the said documents was granted to the petitioner it does not take away the right of the respondents to hold that same is secret and contains classified information and therefore, in view of the provisions of Section 8 (1) (a), the authorities are justified in rejecting the application) held that the disclosure of information has no discernible element of larger public interest.
12 30 Oct, 2013 M.G. Pednekar vs Bhabha Atomic Research Centre

The appellant filed RTI application with regard to copy of complaint made against him along with names and signatures of the complainants, investigation procedure in respect of complaint, and copies of statements obtained from others and other related information - the CPIO provided part of information. However denied disclosing names and signatures of complainants and names and signatures of complainants and statement made by commuters of the bust as the disclosure of same may endanger the life or physical safety of any person or identity the source of information being exempt under section 8(1)(g) of the RTI Act.
The Commission upheld the decision of the CPIO.
13 15 Oct, 2013 Lalit Sharma vs Delhi Police West

The appellant filed an RTI application addressed to Additional Commissioner of Police, West District seeking certified copies of case diaries in FIR No 411/09, certified copies of DD entries (departure and arrival) of the investigating officer and raiding party, NO of persons called for investigation by the first 1.0. and some related information - the CPIO denied the copies of case diary under section 172(3) of Cr.P.c. and also under sections 8(1)(g) & (h) of the RTI Act. The CPIO further stated that the said case is pending trial in the Court as such the statements of witnesses recorded during investigation are the record of this case file and denied this information under Section 8(1)(g) of the RTI Act.
The Commission held that it is of the view that in the present stage section 8(1)(h) would apply in relation to the case diary, however, directed the respondent to provide all the information sought in the RTI application in relation to his case except for the case diary.
14 04 Oct, 2013 K.S. Pathania vs Addl. DIT (Vig) & DIT (Vig.)-II, New Delhi

The appellant had sought information on 4 points relating to the charge sheet spending against him - the information was denied on the ground that the inquiry is pending and once the proceedings are underway, all documents, which are relied upon, would be provided to him as per the rules.
The Commission held that the issue of providing documents when the process of departmental proceedings is ongoing has
been decided by the Commission Order dated 31.10.2008-File No CIC/AT/A/2008/00437, as such the information sought by the appellant cannot be disclosed. The decision of the CPIO/AA is upheld.
15 14 Sep, 2012 Shri Mohinder Singh Sidhu Vs. Directorate General of Vigilance Customs & Central Excise, New Delhi

The commission agreed with CPIO for not providing the information. Section 8(1) (g) and (h)
Total Case uploaded: 26