Files On PM Modi’s Foreign Visits Confidential, Exempted Under RTI Act: CIC [Read Order]
The Central Information Commission has rejected an RTI plea seeking information on costs in relation to the Prime Minister’s foreign travel, observing that disclosure of travel arrangements of the PM, whether foreign or domestic, involve important security concerns.
The commission, perusing the files, said the sought information was of a nature that is exempted under Section 8 (1)(a) of the RTI Act, 2005, and it is also not considered to be possible that after redacting certain information, the rest can be made available, as such information is spread all over the file.
“The information sought by the appellant falls under the category, the disclosure of which would prejudicially affect the sovereignty and integrity of India and security interests of the State, and hence attracts the provision of Section 8(1) (a) of the RTI Act, 2005,” said Chief Information Commissioner RK Mathur.
Commodore Lokesh K Batra had filed the RTI application with PMO seeking the following information:
• laid down instructions, process/procedure/steps involved in Chartering Flights for PM's foreign visits and later filing 'Flight Returns' and raising bills/invoices and clearing bills on completion of the visit;
• list of file(s)/records with reference number(s) on which bills for the chartered flights for Hon'ble Prime Ministers are processed since 01.09.2013;
• certified copies of 'flight return', air travel bill(s) and receipt(s) of an amount of Rs. 2,45,27,465/- paid/cleared in respect of Hon'ble PM's visit to Bhutan on 15-16 June, 2014
• To inspect all the file/files/records in respect of his above RTI queries, and at that stage, the appellant will take certified copies of the documents from files/records.
The commission, however, directed the PMO to inform the complainant the date of receipt and sanction of bills of Prime Minister's Bhutan visit within 30 days.
Read the Order Here
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