DoPT had no information about the Namit Sharma case till the first hearing
Information disclosed in response to an application filed under the Right to Information (RTI) Act has revealed that in the crucial case related to appointment of Information Commissioners, the government counsel was not present to present the views of the government as the concerned ministry was informed very late about the case. As a result, there was no counsel to defend government's position during the first hearing. The matter came to the notice of the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions only after first day's hearing was concluded on July 18.
The Secretary of the Ministry had even sought the explanation on the issue as to how the case could reach the judgment stage without hearing Government of India? In the Namit Sharma Vs Union of India case, the Apex Court had ordered that the Information Commission is a quasi-judicial body and should work as a two member bench one of which should be from the judicial background. The working of the Information Commissions in many parts of the country has come to a standstill as a result of it.
The Director (RTI) Ms. Anuradha S Chagti has been reported by a section of the media as saying that a lawyer had called her telephonically on July 18 around 5 PM informing that writ petition had been filed on July 11 and was listed for arguments the next day.