Central Information Commission

FAQ

The records relating to the second appeals and complaints are retained for a period of six months from the date of disposal of the case.  As regards the administrative/financial records of the Commission, the same is retained as per the policy from time to time.

Yes, intelligence and security organizations specified in the Second Schedule to the Act are exempt from furnishing information under the Act.  However, this exemption does not apply if the requested information pertains to the allegations of corruption and human rights violations.

As per section 6 (1) of the RTI Act, a request may be made in English or Hindi or in the official language of the area in which the application is made.

As per section 6 (1) of the RTI Act a request may be made in writing to the Central Public Information Officer (CPIO) of this Commission. It may also be filed online at https://rtionline.gov.in.

If the information is sought relating to this Commission, the application may be addressed to the Central Public Information Officer of this Commission in Room No. 185, Ground Floor, B-Wing, August Kranti Bhawan, Bhikaji Cama Place, New Delhi-110066.

“Right to information” means the right to information accessible under the Act which is held by or under the control of any public authority and includes the right to---

(i) inspection of work, documents, records;
(ii) taking notes, extracts, or certified copies of documents or records;
(iii) taking certified samples of material;
(iv) Obtaining information in the form of diskettes, floppies, tapes, video cassettes or in any other electronic mode or through printouts where such information is stored in a computer or in any other device.

The type of information which may be obtained is defined under section 2 (f) of the Act as any material in any form, including records, documents, memos, e-mails, opinions, advices, press releases, circulars, orders, log books,   contracts, reports, papers, samples, models, data material held in any electronic form and information relating to any private body which can be accessed by a public authority under any other law for the time being in force.

As per section 3 of the RTI Act any Indian citizen can seek information under the Act.

Yes, it is binding under section 19 (7) of the Act.

After hearing of the cases by the Chief IC or IC concerned, a formal order is passed, a hard copy of which is provided to the complainant/appellant and the CPIO concerned free of cost. A copy of the order passed is also uploaded on the website of the Commission.

Yes, in appropriate cases this Commission may order the public authority to compensate the complainant.

Yes, this Commission may recommend for disciplinary action against the CPIO under the service rules if the Commission is of the opinion that the CPIO has, without any reasonable cause and persistently failed to receive an application for information or has not furnished information within the time specified under sub-section (1) of  section 7 or malafidely denied the request for information or knowingly given incorrect, incomplete or misleading information or destroyed information which was the subject of the request or obstructed in any manner in furnishing the information.

Yes, the CPIO is entitled to a reasonable opportunity of hearing before any penalty is imposed on him.

Yes, this Commission may impose penalty on the CPIO if this Commission is of the opinion that the CPIO has, without any reasonable cause, refused to receive an application for information or has not furnished information within the time specified under sub-section (1) of section 7 or malafidely denied the request for information or knowingly given incorrect, incomplete or misleading information or destroyed information which was the subject of the request or obstructed in any manner in furnishing the information, it shall impose a penalty of two hundred and fifty rupees each day till application is received or information is furnished, so however, the total amount of such penalty shall not exceed twenty-five thousand rupees.

Such information may be supplied only after giving a written notice to the third party and taking into account the submission of the third party.   The information may be disclosed if the public interest in disclosure outweighs in importance any possible harm or injury to the interests of such third party.

In any appeal proceedings, as per section 19 (5) of the Act, the onus to prove that a denial of a request was justified rests on the CPIO who denied the request.

Yes, facility of hearing through video conferencing is available at almost all district headquarters of National Informatics Centre (NIC) in the country.

The appellant may be present in person or through his duly authorized representative.

The complaints and second appeals filed in this Commission under the RTI Act are taken up for hearing in chronological order. However, the Commission in a particular matter may decide to accord precedence depending on the facts and circumstances of the case.

Receipt of second appeals/complaints is a continuous process and they are disposed of as expeditiously as possible. The complaint/appeal is taken up as per its turn. A priority hearing is accorded in a particular case or class of cases as per orders of the Chief IC/IC concerned. A complete list of pending cases of Chief IC/ each IC is available on the website of the Commission. Cause List indicating the date of hearing of the cases is also available on the website of the Commission.

After the receipt of a complaint or appeal in the Dak Section the following activities are taken on it:-

(a) After the receipt of a complaint or appeal, a dak registration number is given. Those who deliver the dak personally, they are given a receipt immediately. For any inquiry, applicant must quote this number. Once the case is registered, the case no. should be quoted.

(b) After classification of the dak in the dak section, if it pertains to a fresh complaint or appeal, it is sent to the CR Section.

(c) The dak is scrutinized in the CR Section as per the provisions in the RTI Act & Rules framed thereunder.

(d) If the appeal is in order as per the RTI Rules, it is registered and given a case number. Similarly, if it is a complaint under section 18 and is accompanied by at least a copy of the RTI request, it is registered and given a case number. After registration it is sent as per allocation of work.

(e) If the appeal is not accompanied by the specified documents, it is returned pointing out the deficiencies with a facilitation memo., for removing the deficiencies and re-filing the same. Similarly, if the complaint is not accompanied by an RTI request, a letter is issued asking for a copy of the same.

(f) If the appeal is premature i.e. filed without first filing a first appeal before the First Appellate Authority in the public authority concerned or filed without waiting for a period of 45 days from the date of filing the first appeal; in such cases it is rejected as premature.

No fee is required to be paid alongwith the second appeal/complaint.

Yes, a second appeal or a complaint can be filed electronically on www.cic.gov.in online along with the requisite documents as per RTI Rules, 2012. The documents must be duly signed/ self-attested/ verified before scanning and attaching with the appeal or complaint being filed.

A second appeal under section 19 (3) of the Act is filed against an order of the FAA in a public authority or when the FAA does not make a decision within the specified time. A complaint under section 18 of the Act may be filed directly on the grounds mentioned in sub-section (1) of this section. The main difference between a complaint and a second appeal is that in the case of an appeal, this Commission may pass orders directing the CPIO to provide the requested information to the appellant in appropriate cases whereas such orders cannot be passed while dealing with a complaint.

Yes. If a formal request for condonation of delay is not made alongwith the second appeal not filed in the specified time, the same is liable to be rejected.

Yes, if this Commission is satisfied that the appellant was prevented by sufficient cause from filing the appeal in time.

No, however, a complaint should be filed within a reasonable period, as soon as a cause of action in the matter has arisen.

Yes, a complaint may be filed directly in this Commission under section 18 of the RTI Act, by a person:-

(a) who has been unable to submit a request to a Central Public Information Officer either by reason that no such officer has been appointed under the Act, or because the Central Assistant Public Information Officer has refused to accept his or her application for information or appeal under this Act for forwarding the same to the Central Public Information Officer or senior officer specified in subsection (1) of section 19 or this Commission;

(b) who has been refused access to any information requested under this Act;

(c) who has not been given a response to a request for information or access to information within the time limit specified under this Act;

(d) who has been required to pay an amount of fee which he or she considers unreasonable;

(e) who believes that he or she has been given incomplete, misleading or false information under this Act; and

(f) in respect of any other matter relating to requesting or obtaining access to records under this Act.

Only one copy of second appeal along with the proof of service of the appeal on the CPIO and the First Appellate Authority is to be submitted to this Commission.

Yes, all the documents submitted along with second appeal are required to be signed/self-attested/verified by the appellant. If the second appeal is filed online, complete copies of all the required documents bearing signatures of the persons concerned are to be uploaded.

The following documents are to be submitted along with second appeal:-

(i) a copy of the application submitted to the Central Public Information Officer;
(ii) a copy of the reply received, if any, from the Central Public Information Officer;
(iii) a copy of the appeal made to the First Appellate Authority;
(iv) a copy of the Order received, if any, from the First Appellate Authority;
(v) copies of other documents relied upon by the appellant and referred to in his appeal; and
(vi) an index of the documents referred to in the appeal.

Yes, the following format of appeal has been prescribed under the RTI Rules, 2012 framed under the Act:

FORMAT OF APPEAL
(See Rule 8)

I. Name and address or the appellant
2. Name and address of the Central Public Information Officer to whom the application was addressed
3. Name and address of the Central Public Information Officer who gave reply to the Application
4. Name and address of the First Appellate Authority Who decided the First Appeal
5. Particulars of the application
6. Particulars of the order(s) including number, if any, against which the appeal is preferred
7. Brief facts leading to the appeal
8. Prayer or relief sought
9. Grounds for the prayer or relief
10. Any other information relevant to the appeal
I I. Verification/authentication by the appellant

Yes, a second appeal against the decision of the First Appellate Authority may be filed before this Commission within 90 (ninety) days from the date on which the decision should have been made by the FAA or was actually received.

Yes, a first appeal before the First Appellate Authority should be filed before moving second appeal before this Commission. If a second appeal is filed without filing a first appeal, the same is liable to be returned.

An applicant can approach the Commission in second appeal under section 19 (3) of the RTI Act against the decision of the First Appellate Authority or when no decision is passed by the FAA within the specified time (maximum period of 45 days).

No, this Commission does not have jurisdiction over a State Information Commission nor a complaint or appeal can be filed in this Commission against an order of a State Information Commission.

The distribution of work amongst the Chief IC and other ICs is available on the website.

As Second Appellate Authority, the Commission has jurisdiction over all public authorities under Government of India which are established, constituted, owned, controlled and substantially financed by funds provided directly or indirectly by the Central Government or the Union territory administration including NCT of Delhi. These include all Ministries/Departments, Public Sector Undertakings under the Government of India. A list of public authorities is on the Commission’s website.

This Commission consists of the Chief Information Commissioner and Information Commissioners not exceeding 10. The present composition is available on the website.

Yes, a Facilitation Desk is functioning in Room No.185, Ground Floor, August Kranti Bhawan, New Delhi-110066 to provide assistance to those who visit the Commission personally for second appeal and complaints. The working hours are 0930 hrs to 1800 hrs (excluding Saturday, Sunday and Gazetted holidays)

Yes, the helpline number is 011-26183053.

The office of this Commission is located at August Kranti Bhawan, Bhikaji Cama Place, New Delhi -110066. There is a branch office in the old JNU Campus, Ber Sarai, New Delhi-110067. The Dak Section and the Central Registry are functioning in Room No.185, Ground Floor, ‘B’ Wing, August Kranti Bhawan, Bhikaji Cama Place, New Delhi-110066.