LUCKNOW || As per information obtained by city-based activist Nutan Thakur, a total recovery of Rs 58.34 lakh in 248 cases of RTI penalty is pending in the Home Department.
Section 20 of RTI Act gives power to the Information Commission to impose monetary penalty on erring Public Information Officers who fail to provide information in time, the maximum penalty being Rs 25,000. This penalty is to be recovered by the concerned department.
In Home Department, recovery of penalty is pending in 248 cases, the oldest being Rs 25000 fine imposed on PIO of SSP Office Meerut on November 29, 2007 and two cases of Rs 25,000 fine imposed on PIO of SP Rural office Meerut on April 24, 2008.
The highest pending recovery is in eight cases of IPS officer Amitabh Thakur. In four of his cases, recovery of Rs 85000 is pending against ADG Tanuja Srivastava while in four cases, recovery of Rs 1,00,000 is pending against Sharad Saxena, Section Officer, Home Department.
As per Nutan, non-recovery of penalty is an important reason for the PIOs remaining lethargic in providing information under RTI.