HC stay on order to reveal babus’ assets

NAGPUR: The Nagpur bench of Bombay high court on Friday granted a stay on a June 25 order passed by the state information commissioner for Vidarbha Vilas Patil asking for declaration of assets by bureaucrats in the state. Patil had directed the general administration department (GAD), headed by chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh, to disclose the assets of former Nagpur municipal commissioner Lokesh Chandra and his wife Abha Shukla, who was then additional divisional commissioner of Nagpur. Patil’s order, passed under right to information (RTI) Act, stirred a hornet’s nest in entire bureaucracy and police machinery. A single-judge bench of justice Arun Chaudhari stayed the order saying that “motive behind demand for disclosure of assets was not clear” and issued notices to the respondents – state chief secretary, chief information officer, information officer for Vidarbha, public information officer of GAD and Sunil Mishra. The court asked respondents to file reply in two weeks before fixing the next date of hearing after four weeks. C S Kaptan represented the petitioner, while advocate N Khubalkar appeared for the state. According to Kaptan, all civil services officers, including IAS and IPS, have to compulsorily file information and annual statement regarding their immovable assets every year to the state government before January 1. The information is to be submitted to the government’s GAD in an envelope. Generally, the information in envelopes is never open to the public, except if directed by the court. Mishra, a convict in Nagpur University’s fake marksheet and revaluation scam, had asked for annual property returns filed by Chandra and Shukla.
19 Jul 2008, 0532 hrs IST, Vaibhav Ganjapure,TNN


2 Responses

  1. Hi,
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  2. Hi,
    This is Vaibhav,
    Thanks for uploading my article on your website.
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