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Give certified copies of answer sheets: HC to MPSC

E Pao 2018-10-09 00:00:00

Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, October 09 2018: The High Court of Manipur has directed the Manipur Public Service Commission (MPSC) to provide certified copies of the 82 candidates selected in the MCSCC (Main) Examination 2016 to Th Lucy Devi, a respondent of the WP (C) No 833 of 2018.Earlier on August 10 this year, the Manipur Information Commission (MIC) directed the SPIO/MPSC to provide certified copies of the answer sheets of the 82 selected candidates of MCSCC (Main) Examination 2016 after blackening the names or particulars of examiners/coordinators/ scrutinizers etc and mark tabulation sheets of all the candidates who appeared in the particular exam to the appellant (Th Lucy Devi) within a period of 30 days on payment of fees by the appellant.

Justice Kh Nobin of the High Court of Manipur apart from dismissing the writ petition filed by MPSC against MIC and Th Lucy Devi yesterday directed MPSC to pay Rs 5000 to the High Court Bar Association of Manipur and comply with the directions contained in the decision of the MIC within 15 days.

While G Pushpa appeared on behalf of the respondents, Senior Advocate M Hemchandra represented the petitioner.

Notably, Th Lucy filed an RTI application on June 13, 2017 seeking scanned copies of the answer sheets along with marks allocated to the 82 selected candidates and also mark tabulation sheets of all the candidates who appeared in the MCSCC (Main) Examination 2016 which were denied by the MPSC.

As the writ petition was heard at the High Court yesterday, the counsel appearing for the petitioner (MPSC) contended that the information sought by the respondent No 2 (Th Lucy) cannot be furnished without following the procedure prescribed in Sections 11 and 19 of the RTI as me information sought is a third party information.

However, the High Court ruled that the information which includes names, addresses, ages, educational qualifications etc.

have been provided by the candidates at the time of participating in the recruitment process and the examination is over, the evaluated answer sheets containing the marks secured by the candidates have become public documents and there is no question of them being declared as confidential nor have they been treated as confidential.

The High Court pointed out that even a third party information can be furnished provided it does not fall under any of the exemptions as enumerated in Section 8 of the RTI Act.

The MPSC is not fair in its dealing with the matter.

Instead of furnishing the information by following due procedure, it took the stand since the information is a third party information, it cannot be divulged to the respondent No 2, remarked the High Court.

It is unfortunate that although the application seeking information was filed on June 14, 2017, MPSC, despite being an institution, dragged on the matter deliberately for more than a year while it could have furnished the information within two/three months.

The MPSC has miserably failed to discharge its duties fairly and reasonably, the Court further remarked.