Shri Nimesh Ramesh Patel vs Reserve Bank Of India, Department … on 3 November, 2009

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Central Information Commission
Shri Nimesh Ramesh Patel vs Reserve Bank Of India, Department … on 3 November, 2009
                           Central Information Commission
                Appeal No.CIC/SM/A/2009/000034 dated 06.11.2007
                 Right to Information Act-2005-Under Section (19)

                                                     Dated: 3 November 2009


Name of the Appellant             :   Shri Nimesh Ramesh Patel,
                                      142/5, Rambhuvan,
                                      1 D Bhuva Road, Wadala,
                                      Mumbai - 400 031.

Name of the Public Authority      :   CPIO, Reserve Bank of India,
                                      Department of Administration & Personnel
                                      Management, Central Office, Amar
                                      Building, P.M. Marg, Mumbai - 400 001.


        The Appellant was not present in spite of notice.

        On behalf of the Respondent, Shri Unnikrishnan, Deputy General

Manager was present.

The brief facts of this case are as under.

2. The Appellant had requested the CPIO on November 6, 2007, for a
number of information in regard to the Specimen Bank Notes and misprint
notes. The CPIO replied on December 27, 2007, somewhat belatedly, and
provided query-wise information, against all the queries except the one
listed at 1(e) about which the CPIO stated that the RBI did not maintain such
information. Not satisfied with this reply, the Appellant moved the first
Appellate Authority on January 22, 2008. The Appellate Authority disposed
of the appeal in his order dated March 12, 2008 in which he endorsed the
information already provided by the CPIO while directing him to transfer the
query No. 1(e) to the Note Printing Presses. Following this direction, the
CPIOs of the Note Printing Press concerned provided the necessary
information on this query in their respective letters dated April 3, 16 and
17, 2008. Still not satisfied, the Appellant has come before the Central
Information Commission in second appeal.

3. The Appellant was not present during the hearing through
videoconferencing. The Respondent was present in the Mumbai studio of
the NIC. We heard his submissions and carefully perused the contents of the

CIC/SM/A/2009/000034
appeal. We are satisfied that the CPIO had provided clear and complete
information on his queries. The Appellant seems to be exercised over the
fact that Specimen Notes have been found to be openly auctioned/sold in
the Mumbai market. The CPIO had made it clear that such notes were not
meant for circulation or use and that there was no specific legal provision
under the RBI Act concerning the Specimen Notes. The Appellant was
entitled to get the information he wanted; but the CPIO could not be
expected to find out if the alleged auctioning or selling of Specimen Notes
in the market could amount to any crime or offence in any other law in
force. The first Appellate Authority had also admitted that the issues raised
by the Appellant could not be brushed aside. While we cannot hold the
CPIO guilty of not providing adequate information, we would surely like to
draw the attention of the authorities of the RBI to this issue for taking
appropriate remedial action to prevent selling or auctioning of their
Specimen Notes if such notes are not meant for either circulation or
numismatic purpose.

4. In respect of the delay on the part of the CPIO, the Respondent
submitted that it was unintentional and was caused by the fact that the
CPIO had to consult various departments within the RBI to provide the
information. He further submitted that the CPIO would abide by the
provisions of the Right to Information (RTI) Act and would never delay in
providing the information in future. IN view of this, we do not intend to
impose any penalty on this delay.

5. With the above observations, the appeal is disposed off.

6. Copies of this order be given free of cost to the parties.

(Satyananda Mishra)
Information Commissioner

Authenticated true copy. Additional copies of orders shall be supplied against
application and payment of the charges prescribed under the Act to the CPIO of this
Commission.

(Vijay Bhalla)
Assistant Registrar

CIC/SM/A/2009/000034

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