PANJIM: The State Chief Information Commissioner Mr. Motilal Keny today heardarguments on Goa Governor Dr. S.S.Sidhu’s plea for constitutional immunity in the complaint filed against him by Adv. Aires Rodrigues under the Right to Information Act. The commission will pronounce its order on Feb 18tth
Adv. Carlos Ferreira and Adv. Mahesh Sonak appearing on behalf of the Secretary to the Governor argued that the Governor was entitled for constitutional immunity and could not be made a party to the complaint.
Adv. Aires Rodrigues however argued that the Governor of Goa Dr.S.S.Sidhu was not entitled to any constitutional immunity in thecomplaint filed against him under the Right to Information Act and that the Governor’s plea for immunity under Article 361 of the
Constitution was totally misconceived.
Adv. Rodrigues today submitted before the Commission that though the notice was issued to the Governor he has in utter disrespect chosen not to respond to the notice and instead a reply has been filed by his Secretary claiming constitutional immunity for the Governor under Article 361 of the Constitution of India.
Stating that a claim for constitutional immunity if any can be raised only by the Governor and not by his Secretary, Adv. Rodrigues submitted that there was nothing on record to show that the Governor had authorised his Secretary to file the reply before the State
Information Commission.
Adv. Rodrigues also stated that it was a crying shame that a claim for constitutional immunity is made on behalf of the Governor when it was claimed in the same breath that he is not a Public authority.
Stating that as a constitutional authority the Governor has to ensure that the constitution and the laws of the land are obeyed, Adv. Rodrigues argued that the Governor cannot act in defiance of law and he cannot on one hand claim constitutional immunity and on the other claim that he is not a Public authority
Adv. Rodrigues also submitted that that the Governor had to be made a party to the complaint as the reason given for denial of the information was that the Governor was not a Public authority under the RTI Act.
Adv. Rodrigues further submitted that if the Governor claims that he is not a public authority to deny information, then he cannot in the same breath claim any constitutional immunity.
Adv. Rodrigues submitted that the law has to be is complied with and not made a mockery of as was sought to be done by the Governor in taking a totally uncalled for and absurd stand that he is not a Public authority. Adv. Rodrigues today also urged the Commission to issue a fresh notice to the Governor of Goa.


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