August 30th, 2017 Posted In: sports

Team TNV

PANAJI (Goa): The Goa State Information Commission (SIC) has held the Goa Table Tennis Association to be a ‘Public Authority’ under section 2(h) of the RTI Act. The Order was passed following a second appeal filed by appellant Sandeep Heble after information sought by him was denied to him by respondent Goa Table Tennis Association. The matter had previously gone up to the High Court of Bombay at Goa which remanded it back to the First Appellate Authority for hearing it afresh on merits after the government withdrew its earlier circular which had brought all the State Associations under the RTI Act.
Pratima K. Vernkar, state information commissioner, in her Order dated August 10, noted, “The Respondent No 1 SAG is hereby directed to provide information sought by applicant vide application dated 22/8/12 filed during 1st appeal in accordance with the provisions of the RTI Act. Needless to say that the respondent No 2 GTTA shall render all required assistance and cooperation to the Respondent No 1 SAG in providing the said information to the appellant.”
The Commission took into consideration the substantial funds received by the respondent Goa Table Tennis Association and noted, “the appellant as well as respondent No 1 SAG have sufficiently established that Respondent No 2 GTTA was carrying on public activities and were substantially financed by the funds provided by the appropriate authority through respondent no 1 SAG and as such I hold the respondent No 2 GTTA is liable to dispense the information as sought by the information seeker as it comes within the purview of definition of “Public Authority” as defined in section 2(h) of the RTI Act.
The Commission in its Order further relied on the findings of the First Appellate Authority that as Respondent No 2 Goa Table Tennis Association is performing duties which are predominantly public in nature which effect the interest of public, and is a sports association recognised by the SAG, and receives grants and concessions from the SAG from time to time, the respondent No 1 SAG can collect the information from respondent No 2 GTTA and then furnish the same to the appellant.
“Aggrieved party, if any, may move against this order by way of a writ petition as no further appeal is provided against this order under the Right to Information Act 2005”, the Commission further noted in its Order.

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Team TNV

The author is a senior Journalist working in Goa for last one and half decade with the experience of covering wide-scale issues ranging from entertainment to politics and defense.

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