NEW DELHI

Supreme Court stays Allahabad High Court order on CIC

J. Venkatesan

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court has stayed an order passed by the Allahabad High Court staying suspension of the State Chief Information Commissioner.

The UP Governor had suspended the Chief Information Commissioner, Asgar Khan, in exercise of his powers under the Right to Information Act, 2005, and prohibited him from attending office. The High Court, acting on a petition from Mr. Khan, had stayed the Governor’s order. The State Government filed an appeal in the Supreme Court against this interim order.

A Bench of Justice B. N. Agrawal and Justice G. S. Singhvi stayed the operation of the High Court order and ordered transfer of the writ petition pending in the High Court to the Supreme Court.

In its special leave petition, the State Government said the High Court had committed a manifest error of law in holding that the Governor could not have passed the suspension order since no inquiry was pending or had begun against the Chief Information Commissioner. The interim order was in substance a final order granting the prayers in the writ petition in favour of the Information Commissioner.

Further, it contended, the Supreme Court had already entertained a reference and notice had been issued in this regard. The effect of this order would be that if he was reinstated as Chief Information Commissioner, he could not be removed even if the charges were proved in the inquiry. .

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