Addressing the issue of delay in renewal of BPL card through RTI
The appellant had submitted her BPL card for renewal to the Food & Supplies Department. She claimed that the application which she had submitted to the Public Authority for renewal of the card has been lost by them and she has been facing great difficulty in meeting both ends without her card. Later, she filed an application under Right to Information (RTI) Act seeking the action taken on her BPL Card. The Public Information Officer (PIO) did not respond to the application. The First Appellate Authority (FAA) issued an order directing the PIO AC (Central) to inform the appellant the status of review of BPL Card and to explain the reasons for not replying to the RTI application.
During the hearing before the Central Information Commission (CIC), the appellant narrated the alleged harassment faced by her in the Circle office of the public Authority and requested the Central Information Commission (CIC) to direct the PA to issue her card at the earliest. The respondent explained that in 2009 various circles were bifurcated and it is not known where the application filed by the appellant is available. The appellant then produced copies of all the relevant papers in respect of issuance of her BPL Card. The respondent assured her that every possible effort will be made to locate her application based on the papers that were handed over to him by the appellant during the hearing.
View of CIC
The Central Information Commission (CIC) directed the PIO to trace the application submitted by the appellant for renewal of her BPL card and to take appropriate action on the application and to inform the status of the application to the appellant. In case the application remains untraceable the PIO may place the complete set of documents before the Competent Authority. The Commission recommended that the Competent Authority may take a sympathetic view of the matter and accordingly take a decision and inform the appellant. Under section 19(8)(b) In its decision, the Central Information Commission or State Information Commission, as the case may be, has the power to require the public authority to compensate the complainant for any loss or other detriment suffered; of the RTI Act, the Commission awarded a compensation of Rs. 3000/- to the appellant.
Citation: Ms Sunita Devi v. Food & Supplies Department in File No. CIC/AD/A/2012/000901
RTI Citation : RTIFI/2012/CIC/573
Click here to view original RTI order of Court / Information Commission