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DFO appologises, SIC drops penalty proceedings
6/18/2019 10:39:08 PM
Early Times Report
BARAMULLA, June 18: After filing a written explanation and seeking an apology , the State Information Commission (SIC) has dropped penalty proceedinginitiated under section 17 of JK RTI Act 2009 against the Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) who was earlier posted in Special Forest Division Tangmarg district Baramulla.
Details available with Early Times reveal that the penalty proceedings initiated pursuant to order No.SIC/K/SA/81/2018/111 dated 11.10.2018 against DFO special forest division Tangmarg in the 2nd appeal titled Irfan Banka V/s DFO / Conservator of Forests, Tangmarg/Sopore were dropped by State Information Commission.
The Commission had directed its registry to issue show cause notice upon PIO (DFO) Special Forest Division, Tangmarg, Barmulla to explain as to why he caused delay of about 30 days in furnishing the information about wood based small scale industrial units to appellant Irfan Ahmad Banka an RTI activist from Magam. The DFO was directed to file a written statement in his defense within a period of 15 days from the date of receipt of SICs order.
The hearing in the penalty proceedings under Section-17 of J&K RTI Act 2009 against Dr. Mehraj Ahmad Sheikh, the then PIO/DFO, Special Forest Division Tangmarg presently DFO, Lidder Forest Division, Bijbehara, Anantnag was held on 07.05.2019. Dr. Mehraj Ahmad Sheikh, attended the hearing. During the proceedings, Dr. Mehraj Ahmad Sheikh, the then PIO/DFO, Special Forest Division Tangmarg, (now DFO, Lidder Forest Division, Bijbehara) filed a written explanation dated 20.10.2018 submitted thereunder that the information requested by the applicant was not available with the respondent's office and the same was to be collected from other Range offices, which took some time to collect and consolidate the information . After collecting the information, the same was provided to the appellant on 27.09.2018.
The PIO further submitted before the Commission that the delay in furnishing information within 30 days was not deliberate and intentional. He accordingly prayed before the State Information Commission (SIC) that the penalty proceedingsinitiated against him be dropped.
While disposing off the penalty proceedings SIC directed the DFO to be careful in dealing with RTI applications. Information Commission Mohammad Ashraf Mir warned him to be careful while disposing off RTI requests.
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