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HindustanTimes Thu,27 Nov 2014

Kasni now questions increase in number of RTS commissioners

HT Correspondent , Hindustan Times   Chandigarh, July 29, 2014
First Published: 20:58 IST(29/7/2014) | Last Updated: 21:00 IST(29/7/2014)

 Even as the controversy over picking favourites for sinecure postings in the Haryana State Information Commission (SIC) and Right to Service Commission (RTSC) fails to subside, Haryana IAS officer Pradeep Kasni on Tuesday questioned the modification in proposal for increasing the number of RTS commissioners to be appointed.
 
RTSCs number increased

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Kasni said the approved proposal for appointing commissioners in the Right to Service Commission (RTSC) was only for two persons. "Since it was expected that initially there would be little work in the commission, it was decided that only two RTSCs would be appointed initially. This was approved by the competent authority also. However, since the government wanted to pack the commission with its favourites the number was later increased to four," Kasni said.

Chief secretary SC Choudhary said though initially the proposal was for appointing one chief commissioner and two commissioners, it was later changed to four commissioners. "The Haryana Right to Service Act provides for the appointment of up to four commissioners. The proposal to appoint four commissioners was also approved by the chief minister. There is no irregularity," Choudhary said.
 
CIC consulted in light of HC directive

Regarding consultations with chief information commissioner (CIC)  for appointing the state information commissioner (SIC), the chief secretary said that consultation process took place in light of an affidavit filed by his predecessor in the Punjab and Haryana high court. The CIC, Naresh Gulati left the decision to appoint SICs to the state government and never objected to it. "In fact, Pradeep Kasni who dealt with this file never objected to it. It is a matter of record," Choudhary said.

The undertaking given by the state government to have consultation with the CIC before appointing the SICs was given as the high court wanted the number of SICs in synchronisation with the quantum of work available in the commission. The Right to Information Act though provide for the appointment of a maximum 10 information commissioners besides a state chief information (SCIC) commissioner (SIC). There are nine SIC and one SCIC now," the chief secretary said.

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