Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Unaided schools can’t deny affiliation details to RTI applicant, rules CIC

Unaided schools can’t deny affiliation details to RTI applicant, rules CIC

Posted: May 03, 2008 at 2213 hrs IST

New Delhi, May 2: While a school that’s not aided by the Government can refuse to divulge information regarding its management, under the RTI, it cannot deny parting with details regarding its affiliation with the CBSE, the Central Information Commission (CIC) has ruled.

Information Commissioner O P Kejriwal observed that since the CBSE is a public authority, documents submitted by any school — while seeking affiliation or extension of the affiliation — must be disclosed to an information seeker on demand. A school cannot turn down such a request by putting forth the contention that being an unaided institution, it’s not covered under the Right To Information (RTI) Act and hence, not liable to make public any information, noted the Commission.

“The Commission feels that while the school being an unaided one can retain its privacy regarding its management, administration and finance, the basis for being granted an affiliation by the CBSE and an extension of this affiliation are documents in the public domain and hence, must be disclosed,” Kejriwal held.

The CIC’s decision came on an appeal by Sanjay K D Chowdhary, hailing from Gondia in Maharashtra, who was denied information regarding the documents submitted by Shririnbai Neterwala School in Tumsar, Maharashtra, for its affiliation with the CBSE.

The CBSE, in its reply, had told Chowdhary that the information he had sought was with a third party, the school, and the latter had refused to make known the same arguing it was an unaided institution. Refusing to buy the school’s contention, the CIC directed the CBSE to disclose the documents pertaining to the extension of affiliation, as asked for by the appellant, by May 5.

Courtesy_
http://www.indianexpress.com

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The RTI Act was passed by the Lok Sabha (Lower House) on 11 May 2005, by the Raj Sabha (Upper House) on 12 May 2005 and received Presidential assent on 15 June 2005. Parts of the Act came into force upon Presidential assent, but the Act came fully into force on 12 October 2005, 120 days after Presidential assent.

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