Aaquib Chhipa, Ahmedabad: A young female law student from Gandhinagar who sought details of internal marks and photocopies of the assessed answer sheet under RTI Act 2005 (Right to Information) was asked to ‘prove her nationality’ in a reply.
The Gujarat University in response to the RTI asked the applicant (the student) for details of her citizenship.
The RTI reply dated December 3, which the applicant received the next day, said the proceedings to provide her with the information under RTI will be initiated after the varsity gets proof regarding nationality from the applicant.
The RTI reply further said Section-6 of the Act empowers only citizens of India to seek details under RTI.
The young law student was awarded four gold medals by the Education Minister and Gujarat Governor during the 68th Gujarat University convocation.
What student said about Gujarat University’s reply on RTI
Speaking to Gujarat Exclusive, the young student said, “I am truly disappointed by the conduct and the reply given by Gujarat University in response to my RTI.”
“I will make a written representation to the Education Minister and Governor of Gujarat regarding Gujarat University’s response under the RTI. Also, I will challenge the said RTI reply before the Gujarat High Court,” the law student said.
The RTI helpline volunteer and activist Pankti Jog said a Public Information Officer (PIO) has to first put on record the reasons for which he thinks the applicant’s nationality is suspicious.
“After clarifying the valid reasons raised about suspicious nationality the PIO can seek the declaration under RTI,” she said.
Jog added that in many cases this sort of tactic is used by officials to delay giving the information sought.
The applicant within 48 hours can write to the PIO asking for valid reasons for demanding the nationality declaration.
Why student filed RTI
The law student further said she initially sought details of internal marks of LLB semester 6 from her law college which had sent it to Gujarat University.
“But I did not get a satisfactory reply from the college and so I filed the RTI seeking details from Gujarat University and the college,” she said.
The law student on October 19 had sought the details of her internal marksheet sent by the college to Gujarat University.
She also demanded photocopies of marksheet and assessed answer sheet under RTI following which she received a reply on December 4 asking her to prove her nationality.
The RTI applicant is a law student of semester 6 at Siddharth Law College, Gandhinagar.
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