BCCI under RTI Act? Larger bench of CIC may decide

Updated: Nov 01, 2011, 20:16 PM IST

New Delhi: The Central Information Commission may refer to a larger bench of the transparency panel to decide whether the Indian cricket board is a public authority and fell under the ambit of the Right to Information (RTI) Act.

At the first hearing of the transparency panel in the presence of TV cameras, Information Commmissioner M L Sharma indicated that the matter may be decided by a larger bench.

The cameras were ordered to be moved out after Amit Sibal, counsel for the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), raised objections.

"I am not going to decide whether you (BCCI) are a public authority. I had called this hearing on your request so that I can decide whether this matter could be referred to a larger bench. So my jurisdiction at the moment is very limited," Sharma told Sibal.

The hearing generated huge interest as TV cameras were allowed inside courtroom for the first time with some of the channels planning live coverage of the hearing parked their OB vans in the vicinity.

But things turned different as soon as Sibal entered the room and asked the Information Commissioner if he was "comfortable" with the recording of the proceedings.

"Well, we talk of transparency. If you have any objections, I will ask them to stop," Sharma said. Sibal said proceedings should not be recorded after which the Information Commissioner ordered electronic media to stop the recording of proceedings.

The case relates to RTI applications filed by activist S C Agrawal and one Alok Varshney seeking details of working of the BCCI.