RTI issue: Governor's office files transfer petition before SC

Panaji, Dec 11 (TOI): The governor’s office on Monday informed the high court of Bombay at Goa that it has filed a transfer petition in the Supreme Court on the applicability of the Right to Information Act to the Goa governor’s office.

The advocate general mentioned it when the appeal filed by the governor’s office challenging the order of the state information commission came up for hearing on Monday at the high court.

The state information commission on October 15 had held that the Goa governor’s office is a public authority under RTI act. The governor’s office approached the Supreme Court by filing a transfer petition on December 6 as another matter of similar nature pertaining to the applicability of RTI Act to the attorney general is pending before the apex court.

The high court adjourned the matter to January 21, 2019, after hearing the parties. Social activist Aires Rodrigues had stated that the governor’s office appealing the Goa state information commission’s order is an attempt to subvert the legislative intent of the RTI Act 2005 and arrogance in complying with the laws of the country which cannot be permitted nor accepted.

He added that if all acts of ministers can be subject matter of scrutiny and can be available to the public under the RTI act, there is no justification why the governor who is being maintained and paid out of the state exchequer, should shy away from furnishing information.

Rodrigues had earlier sought information under the RTI on October 19 regarding official and unofficial tours of the Goa governor and her family members since August 2014 when she assumed office. He also sought the details of guests and expenditure incurred on VIPs and VVIPs and others who stayed at the Goa Raj Bhavan during this period.