Monday, September 1, 2014

RTI act-PIO can't say "file missing or not traceable"-CIC

RTI ACT- PIO cant say "file missing or not traceable" -CIC

Sh.Om Prakash Vs. Land & Building Dept, GNCTD CIC File No.CIC/DS/A/2013/001788SA

RTI ACT- PIO cant say "file missing or not traceable"-CIC [Prof M. Sridhar -Member Commissioner ]

Moot Points :
  • PIO cant say "file missing or not traceable "it is not one of the exceptions of RTI act 

  • PIO has to prove that file was destroyed after following due procedure established by law [destruction of records] 

"Unless proved that record was destroyed as per the prescribed rules of destruction/ retention policy, it is deemed that record continues to be held by public authority. Claim of file missing or not traceable has no legality as it is not recognized as exception by RTI Act. By practice ‘missing file’
cannot be read into as exception in addition to exceptions prescribed by RTI Act. It amounts to breach of Public Records Act, 1993 and punishable with imprisonment up to a term of five years or with fine or both. Public Authority has a duty to initiate action for this kind of loss of public record,
in the form of ‘not traceable’ or ‘missing’. The Public authority also has a duty to designate an officer as Records Officer and protect the records. A thorough search for the file, inquiry to find out public servant responsible,
disciplinary action and action under Public Records Act, reconstruction of alternative file, relief to the person affected by the loss of file are the basic actions the Public Authority is legitimately expected to perform." 

Full Text of order of CIC
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