New Delhi: Suspension orders and charge
sheets issued to government officials should be disclosed
under the RTI as these are not personal information, the
Central Information Commission has held.
The transparency panel held that charge sheets and
suspension orders are issued as part of public activity and
cannot qualify as personal information, hence should be
disclosed to RTI applicants.
The case relates to an RTI application filed by Jayalaxmi
who sought to know the names of Syndicate Bank officials who
are on suspension and those against whom charge sheets have
The bank rejected the information saying that there is
no public interest involved in the application, it is of third
party information and further, it would impede the process of
investigation and departmental enquiry.
During the appeal hearing, the CIC said all relationships
usually have an element of trust, but all of them cannot be
classified as fiduciary.
Information Commissioner Shailesh Gandhi said an
important characteristic for the relationship to qualify as a
fiduciary relationship is that the information provider gives
the information for using it for the benefit of the one who is
providing the information.
"The information like names, designation and branch of
the employees/officers working in Karnataka state who are
under suspension from the services of the bank and further who
are issued with charge sheet as on date has not been provided
by the officers to Syndicate Bank and hence it cannot be said
to held in a fiduciary capacity," Information Commissioner
Shailesh Gandhi said.
Gandhi said the Public Information Officer has failed to
explain how such disclosure would actually be an impediment to
the process of prosecution.