शनिवार, 6 सितंबर 2008

Ansari's novel interprentation of "information"

Rakesh Agarwal (NyayaBhoomi)

Information Commission M.A. Ansari read out section 2(j) to me and said thata Commissioner can decide to allow inspection in lieu of copies ofdocuments. He also said that since Inspection is mentioned in clause (i) andcopies in clause (ii), I should be grateful if he gave me access under the"preferential" clause.

The hearing took place yesterday in a case where Department of Posts hadasked me to deposit more than Rs.1,25,000 as "Labour charges". As halfexpected, he accused me of malafide and said that I cannot expect thegovernment officers to do research for me.

All I wanted was the delivery status of all articles sent through speed postacross the country on one particular day - chosen at random - in order toassess their performance. My speed post articles were being delivered in 3to 10 days within the same city and some articles either went missing orwere delivered to the wrong address. Mr. Ansari said I should visit theiroffices across the country and inspect the status for myself; this is whenhe mentioned the "preferential" clause.

I am preparing a writ for Delhi High Court. This is the 3rd such instancewith Ansari over the last two years.I have immense respect for other ICs but whilst Padma's knowledge of RTI is
elementary, Ansari is an example of how to deliberately and shamelessly killtransparency and accountability.

A copy of Premchand's "Panch Parmeshwar" is on the way to Ansari - with abouquet.

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