More than two months after imposing a fine of Rs 25,000 each on three PIOs of the Director Public Instructions (Secondary Education) in an RTI application,the Punjab State Information Commission has realised that it should first find out who the guilty officers were.
After the respondents moved a representation highlighting their dilemma,SIC Ravi Singh has asked the DPI to look into the matter and inform the commission who were the PIOs at the time of hearings and when the RTI applications were filed. On the basis of that,the penalty should be imposed,she added.
The cases were filed by Kirpal Chand of Qadian,Sham Lal Singla of Sangrur and Satpal Gupta of Dhuri.
In one of the cases,Darshan Singh,Deputy Director-cum-PIO who was penalised,said he could not be blamed as he joined almost a year after the application was filed.
It came out that different officers were in involved in causing the delay. The SIC had not only imposed penalty of Rs 25,000,but also ordered disciplinary action.
The Indian Express had earlier reported that the SIC had penalised PIOs without naming them. Sources in the commission said it was important to fix accountability as the penalty amount is deducted from the PIOs salary.
Nodal PIO of the DPI office D S Dhaliwal said they have given a list of PIOs of all branches to the information commission so that the punishment is awarded to an officer and not the designation. Sources in the DPI office said,The SIC should have fixed the responsibility before imposing heavy fines.