Information about Rs 500 Crore Diamond Export Scam was denied claiming that the matter is sub judice and the information being sought was of commercial confidence which was held in a fiduciary relationship - CIC: denial of information upheld
Vide RTI dt 9.12.12, appellant had sought information on 7 points relating to a news item appearing in Times of India dt 6.12.12 regarding Rupees 500 Crore Diamond Export Scam.
2. CPIO vide letter dt 16.1.13, provided a point wise response.
3. An appeal was filed on 17.2.13.
4. AA vide order dt 1.4.13 provided a response and disposed of the appeal.
5. Submissions made by the appellant and public authority were heard. Appellant submitted that he should be provided the information as per provisions of Section 8(2) Notwithstanding anything in the Official Secrets Act, 1923 (19 of 1923) nor any of the exemptions permissible in accordance with sub-section (1), a public authority may allow access to information, if public interest in disclosure outweighs the harm to the protected interests. of the RTI Act as the matter has already been investigated by the CBI and a charge sheet has been filed before the Court of CJM Mumbai. Moreover, a report of the CAG has been submitted to the Parliament and the matter is in public domain. Public authority submitted that the matter is still sub judice and the Court is yet to take a decision in the matter. As such, the information being sought was of commercial confidence, held in a fiduciary relationship and hence denied u/s 8(1)(d) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, there shall be no obligation to give any citizen, information including commercial confidence, trade secrets or intellectual property, the disclosure of which would harm the competitive position of a third party, unless the competent authority is satisfied that larger public interest warrants the disclosure of such information; of the RTI Act.
6. The Commission concurs with the decision of the CPIO/AA, as the information sought is being held under a fiduciary relationship. The appeal is disposed of.
Central Information Commissioner
Citation: Shri Harinder Dhingra v. Export Credit Guarantee Corporation of India in File No.CIC/SS/A/2013/001355/RM