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Central Information Commission

The Central Information Commission (CIC) is an autonomous body set up to inquire into complaints received from citizens

You can complain to the CIC if you have been refused access to information. Or you can also complain regarding how your RTI request has been handled by the public authority

What can I complain about?

You can complain to the CIC about:

  • + failure to respond to your request within 30 working days (or failure to explain why an extension to the 45 days is needed)
  • + failure to give you proper advice and help within the stipulated time
  • + failure to give information in the form in which you asked for it
  • + failure to properly explain reasons for refusing your request, for instance if the public authority believes that giving you information would harm a criminal investigation.

What information does the CIC need?

To deal with complaint promptly, send the following details to CIC:

  • - name and address of the appellant;
  • - name and address of the Central Public Information Officer against the decision of whom the appeal is preferred;
  • - particulars of the order including number, if any, against which the appeal is preferred;
  • - brief facts leading to the appeal
  • - if the appeal is preferred against deemed refusal, the particulars of the application, including number and date and name and address of the Central Public Information Officer to whom the application was
  • - prayer of relief sought;
  • - grounds for the prayer or relief; verification by the appellant; and
  • - any other information which the Commission may deem necessary for deciding the appeal

Penalties that can be imposed on RTI

Penalties imposable by Information Commission on PIO or officer asked to assist PIO:

  • - For unreasonable delay – Rs 250 per day up to Rs 25,000
  • - For illegitimate refusal to accept application, malafide denial, knowingly providing false information, destruction of information, etc. – up to Rs. 25,000 fine
  • - Recommendation for departmental action for persistent or serious violations
  • However, no criminal liability if
  • - Immunity for actions done in good faith [Section 21]

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