Wednesday, April 7, 2010

School aided by BBMB bound to give info: CIC

School aided by BBMB bound to give info: CIC

Posted: Wednesday, Apr 07, 2010 at 2303 hrs

Central Information Commissioner Shailesh Gandhi has ruled that since the Bhakra Beas Management Board (BBMB) is run by the governments of Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan, a school financed by it is a public authority and covered under the Right to Information Act. Gandhi directed the BBMB DAV Public School, Nangal, to appoint a public information officer and the first appellate authority.

Manju Bala Dhiman of Anandpur Sahib had sought information in August last year regarding the number of posts sanctioned and created in the school’s Nangal and Ganguwal branches since April 1985 and the names and qualifications of teachers appointed on ad hoc basis among other things.

Raneesh Sharma, principal of the Nangal school, claimed that the institution was not a public authority as it was set up consequent to an agreement between the BBMB and the DAV college trust and management society, a private body. The respondent, however, admitted that BBMB was run jointly by the governments of three states.

The appellant pointed out that BBMB was set up under the Reorganisation Act-1966. “Thus, BBMB is a public authority set up by an Act of Parliament and fully owned by the government,” Dhiman said.

The respondent said the land and the building had been provided by the BBMB along with furniture and infrastructure at a token rent of Re 1 per year. “Thus, it appears that the capital cost has been almost completely underwritten by the BBMB, which is run by three state governments. Further, in 2009-2010, out of the total expenditure of about Rs 2.21crore, about Rs 1.85 crore was provided by the BBMB,” it said.

Gandhi ruled: “The BBMB DAV Public School is a public authority as defined by the RTI Act.”


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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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