Skip to main content

Information on Modi's, Anandiben Patel's educational qualifications not in "public interest": Gujarat CM office

By Our Representative
The Gujarat government is learnt to have turned down a right to information (RTI) plea seeking proof of Prime Minister Narendra Mod’s and chief minister Anandiben Patel’s educational qualifications, saying this information cannot be made available because it does not concern “public interest.”
The RTI applicant, Yogesh B Dave, had reportedly made the application to the Gujarat chief minister’s office (CMO) seeking the information. 
In his reply, the official responsible for replying to RTI affairs in the CMO said, “You’ve asked for the photo copies of educational qualifications of the former chief minister of Gujarat and the current CM. As per the RTI act 2005 8(1), this information is related to personal life of both the post holders.”
The reply added, “This information is not related to any public interest. Therefore, this information cannot be provided without the prior permission of both.”
This is not for the first time that an RTI application was made seeking details of the educational qualifications of Modi, who has claimed he has completed his masters’ degree.
In September, the Gujarat University rejected an RTI request on Modi’s Masters’ degree in just one line, without siting any reason or quoting any provision of the RTI Act for it. The one-line reply said, “Under RTI Act of 2005, this information can’t be made public.”
An Ahmedabad based RTI activist had filed a request before the university asking them to furnish the details on the students, who enrolled there for masters’ degree course between 1981 and 1984.
The RTI activist had said that his request was “for all those students, who attended classes in Master of Arts either via correspondence or regular courses both in English and Gujarati languages.”
The RTI applicant had filed the application without naming Modi, though it is well known that this is the period when Modi claims to have completed his masters’ degree.
Earlier, the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) and its appellate authority rejected separate RTI requests seeking to confirm Modi”s educational qualification.
In the reply, the appellate authority SE Rizvi, said, “A public authority is obliged to provide information, which is held in its records and, in the matter in hand where the requisite information does not form part of office records, the contention that the PMO should provide the same is not correct.”
In his request, the RTI activist had sought details of Modi’s “class 10th and 12th and MA (political science).”
An impression is gaining ground that the authorities in Gujarat as well Government of India have been “deliberately” avoiding to reveal details of Modi in any form. 
In June last year, Paragkumar Ashokkumar Patel, a Gujarat citizen, had sought the dates of top Indian tycoon Gautam Adani's visits to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's residence by making an RTI plea (click HERE to read).
The appeal insists, citing section 8(1)(j) of the RTI Act is particularly erroneous, because it "clearly states that if any information is of the nature that is to be disclosed in Parliament, it has to be disclosed to general public."
Claiming that Adani has debt of over Rs 72,000 crore, which is "public money in Indian banks", Patel said, "It is clear that my RTI request is of larger general public interest", yet it has been rejected "citing 8(1) while denying the information."

Comments

TRENDING

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

'Attack on free expression': ABVP 'insults' Udaipur professor for FB post

Counterview Desk   People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), Rajasthan, condemning what it called "insult of Professor Himanshu Pandya" by students affiliated with with the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarti Parishad (ABVP) in Udaipur, has said he was evicted from the class where he was teaching after raising "ugly slogans", forcing him to "leave the university".

Enhanced rock weathering leads to 9-20% higher crop yield, help climate resilience

By Aishwarya Singhal, Lubna Das*  Enhanced rock weathering -- a nature-based carbon dioxide removal process that accelerates natural weathering -- results in significantly higher first year crop yields, improved soil pH, and higher nutrient uptake, according to a new scientific paper, released in PLOS ONE, a peer-reviewed open access mega journal published by the Public Library of Science since 2006.

NE India: Creating 'greater divisions', BJP claims to have overcome tyranny of distance

By Makepeace Sitlhou*  In March, India’s prime minister, Narendra Modi, said at an election rally in Arunachal Pradesh that previous governments had not cared for states that sent only two representatives to the country’s Parliament, as Arunachal and several others in the Indian Northeast do. Modi failed to see the irony of his claim given that he has not visited Manipur, which has only two representatives in parliament, since the outbreak of an armed ethnic conflict that has raged on for nearly a year. The toll from the violence stands at more than 200 lives lost, and many thousands displaced.

Will numerically strong opposition in Lok Sabha strengthen democracy?

By Prem Singh*  After the first phase of the 18th Lok Sabha elections, which were conducted in seven phases, it was already indicated that a large part of the country's population had decided to contest the elections against the present government. A large number of unemployed youth and the already agitating farmers played a major role in this act of protest. 

Heatwave in Bundelkhand: 'Inadequate attention' on impact on birds, animals

By Bharat Dogra, Reena Yadav*  While the heat wave and its many-sided adverse impacts have been widely discussed in recent times, one important aspect of heat waves has not received adequate attention and this relates to the impact on birds and animals.

Adivasi rights leader arrested, 'taken away' in unregistered police vehicle

By Our Representative   In a surprise move, a People's Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) activist, Sunita Potem, who has been raising issues of Adivasi rights in Bastar, has been arrested from Raipur. She was arrested by a team led by DSP Garima Dadar on June 3 "after being pulled out of her room at 8:30 in the morning by the team", sources said.