CIC: Providing information about the marks obtained by the selected candidate & cut-off marks would enhance transparency of the recruitment process and increase the credibility of the respondents; Provide the names & marks of the selected candidates
1. Shri Pammi Lal filed three second appeals in case nos. CIC/PNBNK/A/2017/121074, CIC/PNBNK/A/2017/108026 and CIC/PNBNK /A/2017/107988 in respect of the same RTI application dated 02.09.2016. All these three second appeals are being clubbed together and disposed of by this order.
2. The appellant filed an application under the Right to Information Act, 2005 (RTI Act) before the Central Public Information Officer (CPIO), Punjab National Bank, Inspection and Audit Department, Divisional Office, Pipali Road, Kurukshetra, seeking information on five points pertaining to the recruitment for the post of peon, including, inter-alia,
(i) the names of the candidates selected for the post and the criteria of selection,
(ii) what is the last merit/rank, and
(iii) the date of interview and mode of communication of the interview to the candidates.
3. The appellant filed a second appeal before the Commission on the grounds that the CPIO has denied the information sought on point no. 1 stating that the information sought pertains to third parties. The appellant requested the Commission to direct the CPIO to provide the information sought for and to impose a penalty on the CPIO.
4. Both, the appellant, Shri Pammi Lal and the respondent, Smt. Sneh Singla, Chief Manager, Punjab National Bank, Inspection and Audit Department, Divisional Office, Pipali Road, Kurukshetra, attended the hearing through video-conferencing.
5. The appellant submitted that the Bank had notified vacancies for the post of peon in 2015 for which he was also an applicant. He had filed an RTI application seeking, inter-alia, the names of the selected candidates, the criteria for selection as well as the marks/cut off marks of the selected candidates vide point no. 1 of the RTI application. The CPIO, however, has incorrectly denied this information on the grounds that it pertains to third parties.
6. The respondent submitted that point-wise information as per the available records has been furnished to the appellant. Moreover, the Bank had put up a list of the selected candidates along with their marks on the notice board of the premises. Hence, the information sought under point no. 1 of the RTI application was in public domain and easily accessible to the appellant.
7. The Commission, after hearing the submissions of both the parties and perusing the records, observes that information sought by the appellant had been provided to him by the respondent except on point no. 1 of the RTI application. The Commission, however, observes that providing information about the marks obtained by the selected candidate/ cut-off marks for selection would not only enhance transparency of the recruitment process but would also increase the credibility of the respondent organization.
8. The Commission also notes that the Division Bench of Hon’ble Delhi High Court in case of Union Public Service Commission v. N. Sugathan, W.P.(C) No.8845/2014and other connected petitions (including Union Public Service Commission v. Gourhari Kamila) has held that:
“…….an applicant for a public post participates in a competitive process where his eligibility/suitability for the public post is weighed/compared vis-a-vis other applicants…….an overlooked/unsuccessful applicant is entitled to details/particulars of the successful applicants. An exception was however carved out with respect to the information sought with respect to other overlooked/unsuccessful candidates……….”.
In view of the above, the Commission directs the respondent to provide the names and marks of the selected candidates, to the appellant within a period of four weeks from the date of receipt of a copy of this order.
9. With the above observations, all the three appeals are disposed of. 10. Copy of the decision be provided free of cost to the parties.
Citation: Pammi Lal v. CPIO, Punjab National Bank in Decision No. CIC/PNBNK/A/2017/121074+108026+107988, dated 28.03.2018