Monday, August 28, 2006

SATYAMEVA JAYATE..................

Today was my hearing with the state information commission. I had earlier filed a petition with the Municipal Corporation of Hyderabad(MCH) regarding details of property tax collection in an area called prashashan nagar. I ran around MCH and the circle office for about 15 times. I complained to the commissioner(MCH) after 33 days. Still the same. Then i had no other option but to approach the state commission. Today was the hearing. It was supposed to start at 4pm. I went in at around 4.02pm. They were already waiting for me! MCH was represented by Deputy commissioner Koundinya and some additional commissioner. The state commissioner was K.Sudhakar Rao. I had to apologize for being late. Then i was asked put forward my points...here they go....

1. I filed the petition on 24th march. Then filed the first appeal on 27th april. Finally i appealed to the state commission on 2nd June. I received a reply only after some 95 days on 28th June. My application was rejected on the grounds that this would "disproportionately divert the resources of the concerned public authority". How funny......
2. They sent my application back and forth for about 20 times between the MCH head office and the circle 5 office. Each time i had to track the where my application was wasting my time. If this back and forth business did not disproportionately divert the resources, then i am very sorry at the functioning of the corporation.
3. There is no mechanism in MCH even to take the mandatory fees of Rs10/-. Every time i would ask them, they say not required. After all it is not their money.
4. I am very disappointed at both the way my application was handled and also the reply. If this is the way the so called hi-tech corporation of hyderabad operates, then i have no words to say.

Then started the fun....the state commissioner repeatedly asked the MCH ppl as to why was my application rejected. Neither they knew the law nor the section written that was used as an excuse to reject my application. Some intelligent guy in MCH suggested that the application can be rejected on these grounds and they blindly did so. They didn't read the act. They knew nothing about the act. All that they knew was to read from some letter which was sent to me as reply. The MCH authorities were like convicts sitting and me the victim. The judge started blasting them left and right....i was just happy to look at the fun...after all the discussions, a first warning was issued to MCH and here is the outcome of the hearing.....

1. MCH is severely reprimanded and an official letter will be sent to the commissioner,MCH in this respect.This is the first and last warning.
2. The requested information will have to be provided within 7 days from the day the order is issued.
3. The cost of providing information,(as they would surely be voluminous records) will have to be borne by the concerned authority.
4. That cost of providing information will be deducted from the salary of the concerned authority according to section 7 sub clause 6 of the RTI act.


I thanked them and came out. The MCH officials were still sitting in his cabin. may be trying to influence him. But whatever, the system which i strongly believe in has once again proved that truth prevails.....it is a victory of sorts....

SATYAMEVA JAYATE......

I am eagerly waiting for the information..........

5 comments:

prishah007 said...

congrats rakesh on ur victory! and can u teach me how to file RTI's

-gautham- said...

hmm.. another achievement.. keep going..

Shashi Kiran said...

well done ra rakesh...keep goin buddy.

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santhoshi said...

datz gr8 news,cograts rakesh get going till our end