Appellant: Opportunity of hearing was not given by the FAA – CIC: Rendering a hearing is a fundamental principle of jurisprudence - CIC: As far as possible, the FAA should give the appellant including third party, if any, an opportunity of hearing
Appellant sought following information:
1. a)How many contractors have been/were engaged during the 2011-2012,2012-2013 & 2013-2014 to run the different electric maintenance works under the control of TESD, Asansol and TESD, Burdwan.
b)The name of the Contractors with address along with the nature of maintenance works for which they have been /were engaged may also be furnished.
2. a)Presently how many contractors are working for electrical maintenance works under the control of TESD, Asansol and TESD, Burdwan.
b) Their names and address along with the Photo copies of work orders which have been issued for electric maintenance works (such as running the AC package at different Exchanges, water supplying and electric maintenance works of different P&T colonies & different offices, different BTS maintenance & BTS guarding works) they have been engaged to contractual basis may also be furnished.
3. Presently how many labourers EP are deposited by the Contractors regularly in the EPF office along with the list of labourers engaged on contractual basis with station of working may also be furnished.
4. a) How much amount has been sanctioned during the year 2012-2013 & 2013-2014 for electrical maintenance of works for the P&T Colony, Durgapur-1 and Co-axial Colony, Durgapur-1 respectively.
5. b) How much expenditure has been incurred during the current year 2012-2013 & 2013- 2014 till date with mentioning the nature of works has been carried out in respect of P&T Colony,Durgapur-1 and Co-axial Colony, Durgapur-1 respectively may be furnished
6. How much amount has been paid to the Contractor month wise for running the AC package, electrical maintenance works etc. of Durgapur old Steel Exchange Building, Durgapur-5 (Owner of the Bldg., SAIL,DSP Authority)during the period 2012-2013 & 2013-2014 (till date).
File No. CIC/BS/A/2014/002804
1. Furnish month-wise details from April, 2011(date of shifting of DGS Exch. To DTO Bldg.) to till date, of amount of expenditure incurred for paying House Rent, Electric & Water charges and wages for security guard.
2. Amount of expenditure has been incurred for making monthly payment of House Rent, Electric& Water charges for 2nd floor of Bhiringee Exchange Building where SDE (Gr.), Bhiringee office was situated earlier to the house owner for the period from the date of abolishing of SDE (Gr.), Bhringee post to till date maybe furnished month-wise.
3. Presently there were thirty six (36) numbers of listed casual labourers working under Durgapur Division, Month-wise & name wise number of days they have worked since 1998 may be furnished. Photo copies of their monthly Attendance Register since 1999 may also be furnished.
4. On the basis of recommendation letter of the then DGC, Durgapur Division, the then DGM(A), Mr. P.Paul William, circle office declared 31 casual labourers (list enclosed) out of 36 casual labourers as listed casual labourers under Durgapur division.
(A) Photo copy of circle office letter in the above 31 casual labourers approved as listed casual labourers under Durgapur division may be furnished.
(B) Photo copy of the recommendation letter of the then DGM., Durgapur Division under which the circle authority declared the above 31 labourers as listed labourers under Durgapur Division may be furnished.
(C)Photo copy of the recommendation letters of the SDEs & SDOPs of Durgapur Division wherein it was stated/cerified that all 31 labourers have been working since 1995,1996,1997,1998,1999,2000 as the case may be, on which basis the then DGM, Durgapur recommended the above mentioned 31 labourers to circle office for declaring them as listed labourers may kindly be furnished.
5. One listed casual labourer is working at Fuljhore Exchange, Durgapur-10.Photo copy of his attendance for the month of Sept.2013 & number of days payment has been made on that month may please be furnished.Numbers of hours he is staying in working days at work place may also be furnished.
6. Photocopies of letter under which the SDE(Gr.), Panagarh lodged complaint to the Police Authority regarding the theft cases of power plant Batteries of Rajbandh & Bonkati Exchanges maybe furnished.
7. Exchange wise period of load shedding (power off), consumption of Electricity with bill amount of consumption of diesel for Generator for running the Exchange month wise since 2010 may kindly be furnished.
8. Photocopy of Departmental orders on which basis A/Cs had been installed to he chambers of AGMs, CAO & AO(cash)& their entitlement may be furnished. The Photocopies of requisition letters on which basis the E.E.(Elect.), Asansol had installed the above A/Cs & Photocopies of sanction estimate for the same (as this office had sanctioned the Estimate) may also be furnished.
Grounds for the Second Appeal: The CPIO has not provided the desired information.
Relevant Facts emerging during Hearing: The following were present
Appellant: Mr. Mirza Ashadul Haque through VC;
Respondent: Mr. A. Das Gupta, CPIO through VC;
The CPIO stated that the information sought in both the appeals is inter-related and they may be heard together and disposed of by a common order. He submitted that he has recently joined as the CPIO and has collected all the details and handed over the information to the appellant. The appellant after going though the documents stated that he is generally satisfied with the reply given by the respondent and in case he needs any further information will contact the CPIO. He informed that the FAA despite his specific request did not give him any opportunity of hearing.
The information has been supplied.
As regards the appellant’s submissions that he was not given an opportunity of hearing by the FAA, it is needless to say that rendering an opportunity of hearing to the parties is a fundamental principle of jurisprudence. It is conducive to fairness and transparency and accords with the principles of natural justice. An opportunity of hearing to the parties also brings greater clarity to the adjudicating authorities. This Commission always gives an opportunity of hearing to the parties but this does not appear to be usually done by the FAAs, as probably there are practical difficulties therein, partly arising out of the number of appeals involved and partly due to the limited time frame in which the matters are required to be decided. In view of this, we would only like to suggest that the FAA should, as far as possible give the appellant including third party, if any, an opportunity of hearing specially if he so requests, without forgetting that the essence of RTI Act is to provide complete, correct and timely information to the appellant. The appeals are disposed of accordingly.
Citation: Mr. Mirza Ashadul Haque v. BSNL in File No. CIC/BS/A/2014/002034+002804/8426