Did ASI disobey CIC directive on Babri report?
New Delhi: The Archaeological Survey of India has apparently not complied with the directives of Central Information Commission to make public its detailed report on the Babri Masjid-Ram Janmabhoomi site in Ayodhya.
Chief Information Commissioner Satyananda Mishra had directed the ASI to either disclose its report of the disputed site or in case, the disclosure has been prohibited by the Allahabad High Court through its order, the copy of that
directive must be provided to activist Subhash Agrawal.
In the decision dated February 29, Mishra had given 10 working days to the ASI, after receiving the order, to comply with the directives.
But even after nearly 45 days, no response was received by Agrawal prompting him to file a non-compliance complaint with the transparency panel.
"Your honour vide your esteemed order dated 29.02.2012 in appeal number CIC/SM/C/2011/000112 was kind enough to direct Archaeological Survey of India to respond to queries of my RTI petition within 10 working days of receipt of your esteemed verdict.”
"But despite the copy of verdict been received many days ago, the public-authority has not responded to queries of my RTI petition as directed by your honour," Agrawal complained.
The ASI is understood to have carried out the survey of the disputed site on the directions of the Allahabad High Court which was hearing the matter.
Through his RTI application Agrawal had sought the copy of the report submitted by the ASI. The ASI refused to give the document, saying the report was meant exclusively for the high court. When the matter reached before the transparency panel, the ASI reiterated its stand. Agrawal argued that if the High Court had prohibited the disclosure of report, that order should be provided to him.
"We think that this is a very fair request and the CPIO should provide a copy of the relevant extract from the order of the high court in which the ASI had been instructed to present the report only to the high court and not to disclose it to anyone else...In case, there is no such express direction from the high court, the copy of the said report should be provided to the appellant," Mishra had said.