Saturday, December 05, 2009

Cabinet papers can be disclosed under RTI Act: Delhi HC

The Delhi High Court has rejected the government's plea that cabinet papers containing the deliberations of the ministers cannot be disclosed under the RTI Act even after a decision has been taken by it on an issue. Justice Sanjiv Khanna rejected the plea by the Centre which contended that the decision by the cabinet can be disclosed but not the cabinet papers which record the deliberations of the council of ministers, secretaries and other officers.

The Court, while elaborating the provisions of the Right to Information Act, pointed out that the exemption to make public such documents is only till the final decision is taken by the Centre. "A limited prohibition for a specified time is granted (under the Act). Prohibition is not for an unlimited duration or infinite period but lasts till a decision is taken by the Council of Ministers and the matter is complete or over," the court said.
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