“The respondent observed that the queries are in the nature of seeking clarification/opinion and cannot be construed as “information”…”: SEBI, Part 2.

The respondent, in response to the query numbers 1, 2, 3, 5, 6 and 7, observed that the queries are in the nature of seeking clarification/opinion and accordingly, cannot be construed as, “information”, as defined under section 2(f) of the RTI Act, 2005. In response to query number 4, the respondent informed that the appellant should refer to SCORES FAQs. The respondent also provided the web link for accessing the same.

The appellant had filed an appeal on the ground that access to the requested information was refused. The appellant, in her appeal, has reiterated the queries raised in her application. Query numbers 1, 2, 3, 5, 6 and 7- On consideration, Mr Baiwar agreed with the observation of the respondent that the queries are in the nature of seeking clarification/opinion from the respondent. It is understood that the respondent is not supposed to create information; or to interpret information; or to furnish clarification to the appellant under the ambit of the RTI Act. It was found that the said queries cannot be construed as seeking ‘information’ as defined under section 2 (f) of the RTI Act. Consequently, the respondent did not have an obligation to provide such clarification under the RTI Act.

For the query, the appellate authority, Mr Anand Baiwar, made reference to the matter of Hon’ble CIC, in the matter of Vineet Pandey vs. CPIO, United India Insurance Company Limited (Judgment dated January 21, 2021), wherein similar observations were made by the Hon’ble CIC. Further, in the matter of Shri Shantaram Walavalkar vs. CPIO, SEBI (Decision dated January 17, 2013), it was noted that the Hon’ble CIC held: “… we would also like to observe that, under the Right to Information (RTI) Act, the citizen has the responsibility to specify the exact information he wants; he is not supposed to seek any opinion or comments or clarifications or interpretations from the CPIO…”. In view of the said observations, it was found that there was no deficiency in the response.

On perusal of the query number 4 and the response provided thereto, it was found that the respondent has adequately guided the appellant for accessing the information which is available in the public domain. Appellate Authority found that the query has been adequately addressed. 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.

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