Criminal Trident Pack: IPC, CrPC and IEA by Sr. Adv. G.S Shukla and Adv. Raghav Arora
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Dr. MPS RAMANI Ph.D.[Tech.] (Scientist/Engineer)     16 January 2011

How the RTI Act works? Keys given to the thief

 In our building all flats are residential flat. On the ground floor one member is using his flat as a go down. The Secretary of the Society asked him several times, both orally and in writing, not to use the flat for any purpose other than as a bona fide residence. But the member was evasive. Then the Society had suspicion that the member had applied to the Municipality for a Registration Certificate to use the premises as a shop. An application under RTI was made to the Public Information Officer, F-N Ward, Mr. A. B. Tambe, Senior Inspector, Shops & Establishments, seeking information whether the member had applied for a Registration Certificate and whether he had produced permission/NOC from the Society for doing business from the premises.

 In his reply the PIO confirmed that the member had applied for a Registration Certificate. But he said that the permission of the Society was not necessary for the purpose. His replies to the questions regarding reference to Fire Department and actual grant of Registration Certificate were evasive. Copy of his reply is attached.

 As the reply of the PIO was not satisfactory, first appeal was made to the Assistant Commissioner, F/North Ward. Instead of point to point reply the Assistant Commissioner called for a hearing and asked the Secretary to attend. At the hearing the PIO was also there. The Assistant Commissioner told the Secretary that there was a BMC circular saying permission of the Society was not necessary and he showed copy of a circular. The circular had nothing to do with the question of requirement of permission of the Society or otherwise. Later he issued the minutes of the meeting, which was vague and which only said the PIO was ordered to give information. There was no reference to the actual questions.

 As the first appeal did not yield the necessary results, a second appeal was made to the Information Commissioner. And who was the Information Commissioner?  The infamous Ramanand Tiwari, who is now refusing to quit as Information Commissioner despite Government orders. Ramanand Tiwari called a meeting and flatly justified the Municipal Officers. He even challenged the Secretary to go to court against the Municipality.

 



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 3 Replies

N.K.Assumi (Advocate)     16 January 2011

If Mr.Tiwari can refused Goverment;s Order to Quit as SIC, he is so great that it will be very difficult to get what you want through RTI and the court also. But try your luck with  writ Petition in the High court.

J. P. Shah (RTI & CONSUMER ACTIVIST)     12 April 2011

This is a violation of coop society law also and hence society should approach Registrar of Coop Societies under whom society is situated to evict or disqualify the member.

Dr. MPS RAMANI Ph.D.[Tech.] (Scientist/Engineer)     12 April 2011

 

 

 

The Registrar entertains only complaints from members against the Society or its Committee members and not vice versa. The Society will have to go to co-operative court. We did go to the court and got order against the member.

The point I referred to was not about how to deal with the member. It was about the corrupt municipal officers, who were bribed by the member and how they cleverly defeat RTI. Nowadays RTI tries to counter corruption. But appointing a corrupt official like Ramanand Tiwari as State Information Commissioner, amounted to handing over the key of the tijori to the thief. It was like appointing P. J. Thomas as CVC. The RTI application was given by the Secretary of the Society. For second appeal the authority was the immediate boss of the Information Officer. What was the use? They were hand in glove in corruption. So the appellate authority avoided a straight reply. Instead of giving a reply to the applicant he called a meeting. It was a ploy. Had I known I would have asked the Secretary (the applicant) to refuse to attend the meeting. But he attended. The officer showed some irrelevant circular and told him that it was a municipal order saying permission was not necessary. The Secretary believed it and the concerned officer just issued minutes of meeting with no mention of the question asked by the Society. As I suspected, I asked the Secretary to get a copy of the alleged circular. When he got it, it was exactly as I expected. I first thought of asking the Secretary to write to the Municipal Commissioner. Then I allowed him to make the second appeal and the result was as I said earlier. Now Tiwari is out and no action will be taken on the second appeal, unless one pursues again. The right person to write to was the Municipality Commissioner. I have advised the Secretary to do that.  I am only an ordinary member of the Society. But with experience I can anticipate how crooks will behave, when cornered.


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