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news details
How much did Jio pay to JK for allowing fibre-optic cable?
Deptt concerned refuses info
7/9/2019 12:30:32 AM
Early Times Report
BUDGAM, July 8: The Executive Engineer R&B Division Budgam has denied to share information to an RTI applicant about the compensation received by the department for allowing fibre-optic cable under the road in Khan Sahib area of Budgam.
Sources say that telecom company Jio had paid a huge compensation R&B in many parts of J&K but the details are not being disclosed which has been authenticated by the fact that R&B division Budgam even failed to provide the information under Right to Information Act (RTI)
Details available with Early Times reveal that on March 9, 2019 an information seeker namely Ajaz Ahmad Dar, of Watrad, Budgam sought details about compensation provided by the Jio to R&B for allowing laying of fibre optic cable from Raithan to Kachwari in Khansahib block as lot of damage was caused to the road during that process. In addition to it, details of some other developmental works were also sought.
The PIO/Executive Engineer R&B Division Budgam was supposed to provide the information within 30 days. The officer failed to provide the information to Ajaz even after 30 days. The appellant then filed 1st appeal before First Appellate Authority (FAA) Chief Engineer PWD (R&B) Kashmir Silk Factory Road, Rajbagh, Srinagar on 15.05.2019 via speed post.
The First Appellate Authority, that is, Chief Engineer PWD (R&B) Kashmir did not adjudicate the appeal as per the provisions of JK RTI Act 2009, alleges Ajaz. He told Early Times that PIO (Xen PWD Budgam) was not summoned also nor was appellant (Ajaz) intimated to appear for the 1st appeal hearing, instead the officer who is a quasi-judicial authority under RTI law gave a direction to Executive Engineer R&B Division Budgam vide letter dated 23.05.2019 to take appropriate action.
After 16 days the Executive Engineer (PIO) R&B Budgam dispatched a letter to appellant Ajaz Ahmad Dar vide Communication No: EE/ R&B/ BUG/3/24-27 Dated: 9.6.2019 informing him that he has to pay a huge fees. He failed to reveal the details/exact amount of fees.
"In addition to it the PIO/Xen R&B Budgam wrote some absurd lines in the letter wherein he said that if I wanted to avoid paying fees then I should appear before him. After expiry of 30 days information is to be provided free of cost by PIO as it is deemed to be denial of providing information. Inspite of sending this absurd and ridiculous letter, I went to meet the PIO (Xen R&B Budgam) on Friday June 28 at around 11:30 am. The officer was not in his office and I was asked to meet the head clerk who took my cell number. He told me that I would get a call from the office, but more than 10 days have lapsed and they never called me back," said Ajaz.
Ajaz has now filed 2nd appeal before the State Information Commission (SIC) praying that PIO/Executive Engineer R&B Division Budgam be penalized for violating J&K RTI Act 2009 and that he should be commanded to provide information free of cost.
The appellant has also requested SIC that Chief Engineer PWD (R&B) Kashmir) be summoned and asked why he failed to adjudicate 1st appeal as per the provisions of J&K RTI Act 2009. In addition to it appellant has prayed that Chief Engineer (FAA) should be directed to make voluntary disclosure of information that was sought through RTI and same be uploaded on his official website.
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