The Central Information Commission (CIC) issued a show-cause notice to RBI Governor Urjit Patel for “dishonouring” a Supreme Court judgment on disclosure of the wilful defaulters’ list. The CIC has also asked the Prime Minister’s Office, the Finance Ministry and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to make public the letter of former RBI governor Raghuram Rajan on bad loans.
It may be recalled that the Apex Court had directed the RBI to disclose names of wilful defaulters, who have taken bank loans of Rs 50 crore and above. Referring to this verdict, the CIC has asked Patel to explain why a maximum penalty should not be imposed on him for “dishonouring” the court verdict, which had upheld a decision taken by then information commissioner Shailesh Gandhi, calling for disclosure of names of wilful defaulters.
Information Commissioner Sridhar Acharyulu said that the commission considers the governor as the deemed PIO responsible for non-disclosure and defiance of Supreme Court orders and CIC orders and directs him to show cause why a maximum penalty should not be imposed on him for these reasons, before November 16,
He rejected the arguments of Santosh Kumar Panigrahy of the RBI that section 22 of the Right to Information (RTI) Act would not override various laws he quoted, prohibiting disclosure of names and details of wilful defaulters and hence, the RBI should be discharged from the obligations of disclosure.