“Online examination for recruitment of Officer Grade A is being conducted by Institute of Banking Personnel Selection, which is an autonomous body…”: SEBI.

The appellate authority under the RTI (Right to Information) Act of the Securities and Exchange Board of India comprising of Mr. Anand Baiwar adjudicated in the matter of Abhijit Bhimagonda Bhikkappa v CPIO, SEBI, Mumbai (Appeal No. 4350 of 2021) dealt with an issue in connection with Section 2 (f) of the Right to Information Act, 2005.

The appellant, Mr Abhijit Bhimagonda Bhikkappa had filed an application via RTI MIS Portal on the 6th of June, 2021 under the Right to Information Act, 2005. The respondent responded to the application by a letter on the 23rd of June, 2021, filed by the appellate. After receiving a letter from the respondent on 23rd of June, 2021, on his application, the appellate decided to file an appeal on the 27th of June, 2021. In his application, the appellate was seeking the following information:

  1. Question Paper and Answer Sheet of Phase I Exam given by the appellant – Answer Sheet with reference and analysis of all the questions.
  2. Full details of how I measured the marks I got for the Phase I exam.

The respondent, in response to query numbers 1 and 2, informed that the online examination for recruitment of Officer Grade A is being conducted by Institute of Banking Personnel Selection, which is an autonomous body, on behalf of SEBI. The respondent also informed that the information sought is not available with SEBI as the same is not shared with SEBI.

The appellant has filed the appeal on the ground that the information provided was incomplete, misleading or false. The appellant, in his appeal, submitted that he cannot ask for information directly from IBPS.

For the query, the appellate authority, Mr Anand Baiwar, made reference to the matter of Hon’ble CIC, in the matter of Central Board of Secondary Education & Anr. vs. Aditya Bandopadhyay & Ors (Judgment dated August 9, 2011) held that “The RTI Act provides access to all information that is available and existing. This is clear from a combined reading of section 3 and the definitions of `information’ and `right to information’ under clauses (f) and (j) of section 2 of the Act. If a public authority has any information in the form of data or analysed data, or abstracts, or statistics, an applicant may access such information, subject to the exemptions in section 8 of the Act. But where the information sought is not a part of the record of a public authority, and where such information is not required to be maintained under any law or the rules or regulations of the public authority, the Act does not cast an obligation upon the public authority, to collect or collate such non- available information and then furnish it to an applicant.”. In view of these observations, the appellate authority found no deficiency in the response.

In view of the above-made observations, the Appeal was accordingly dismissed since the appellate authority found that there was no need to interfere with the decision of the respondent.

Click here to read the entire order.

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