The Central Information Commission has directed the Ministry of Urban Development to furnish records of about 3,000 displaced people from Pakistan who have been given land to settle in the national capital.
The Urban Development Ministry had told the Commission that it does not have any digitised records of displaced people from Pakistan who have settled in the national capital and were allotted lands here.
The matter came before Julka after an applicant filed an appeal against the ministry for not furnishing response to his queries seeking details of people from Pakistan who were given settlements in Geeta colony.
"In its reply, the respondent (MoUD) explained that the original policy may have been evolved by MHA and thereafter the subject matter for allotment of land to the displaced individuals was handed over to MoUD," Julka noted.
He also pointed out the only explanation given in the reply was that it pertained to a 'third party' without clearly specifying the provision under Section 8 (1) of the RTI Act, 2005 to deny the information.
"Neither the respondent present during the hearing nor the CPIO responding to the RTI application could justify their positions as to how the disclosure of information would be in contravention to any of the provisions enshrined under Section 8 of the RTI Act, 2005," he said.
Citing order from the Delhi High Court, Julka said the ministry is required to provide justification or establish the reason why such exemption was claimed.
"Moreover, as per the provisions of Section 7 (8) (i) of the RTI Act, 2005, where a request for disclosure of information is rejected, the CPIO shall communicate the reasons for such rejection, he said.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)