Can’t refuse information under RTI on grounds that it’s ‘bulky’, says Delhi High Court

April 28, 2024 01:45 am | Updated 11:18 am IST - NEW DELHI:

Delhi High Court.

Delhi High Court. | Photo Credit: File Photo

The High Court has held that a public authority cannot deny information under the Right to Information (RTI) Act on the grounds that the information sought is “bulky”.

The court said that denying information on the grounds that the information sought by an individual is bulky “will amount to adding one more exemption under Section 8 of the RTI Act”.

The court made the remarks while rejecting a petition by the Indian Institute of Foreign Trade (IIFT), a Centre-run institute, challenging a January 2016 order of the Central Information Commissioner (CIC) directing it to provide the “complete and categorical information” to a former employee Kamal Jit Chibber.

Mr. Chibber had sought year-wise details of income and expenditure with respect to various programmes run by the institute. He had also sought year-wise details of grants received from the Centre and details of how the institute spent these grants.

The High Court noted that the “only reason given” by IIFT for not providing the information sought by Mr. Chibber was that the information is “bulky”.

It ruled that the information sought by the former employee of the institute does not fall under any of the exemptions under Section 8 of the RTI Act.

Section 8 of the Right to Information (RTI) Act lists several grounds on which a public authority can refuse to disclose information.

“In view of the above, this court does not find any reason to interfere with the order of the CIC,” the court said in its April 26 order.

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