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Nivedita Khandekar, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, January 12, 2013
A reply by the Central Information Commission (CIC) to an RTI query has exposed how it has not provided information sought about compliance of CIC orders that had imposed penalties, initiated disciplinary actions and/or ordered compensation. TVLN Mallikajurna Rao, an activist, had sought information about compliance reports with regards to 55 orders of the CIC wherein various information commissioners had imposed penalties, ranging up to maximum Rs. 25,000; ordered compensation to be paid to RTI applicants and advised disciplinary action against information officers in government offices among others. He had sought answers in a tabular format.

The CIC reply told him: “The information sought is not maintained in the form suggested by you. However, the penalty list as maintained runs into 165 pages” and suggested he can get a copy by paying photocopy charges.

Stating that he had asked for compliance of all kinds of orders, instead, the CIC offered the list of penalties realised, Mallikarjuna said: “Right to Information (RTI) Act mandated the CIC with powers and responsibilities to see that the Act is implemented in letter and spirit.”