RTI APPEAL AGAINST DIRECTOR OF PROSECUTION: ORDER RESERVED

PANJIM: Law Secretary of Goa Mr. Pramod Kamat exercising his powers as the First Appellate Authority under the RTI Act today reserved his order on the RTI appeal filed by Adv. Aires Rodrigues against the Director of Prosecution Mrs. Shobha Dhumaskar. The Law Secretary today heard arguments advanced by Adv. Aires Rodrigues and Mrs. Shobha Dhumaskar
Adv. Aires Rodrigues today submitted before the Law Secretary that the information denied to him goes to the very jurisdiction and competence of the Director of Prosecution/ Public Prosecutors/ Assistant Public Prosecutors to tender legal opinion in as much as such action if not authorized by law, would amount to interference with the investigating authorities.
Adv. Rodrigues also submitted that even in Maharastra the Director of Prosecution as well as the Public Prosecutors and Assistant Public Prosecutors do not give legal opinion or advice to Police Investigation officers.
Adv. Rodrigues’s further argued that the role of the Public Prosecutor begins only after the charge sheet is filed and that he cannot interfere or give any opinion while the investigation of any case is on and that this has been reiterated by the Supreme Court on various occasions.
Stating that every act, action or decision of any government authority has to be under some sanction or provision of law, Adv. Rodrigues further argued that the Director of Prosecution was bound to furnish a proper and complete reply to the information sought by him. Adv. Rodrigues also submitted that denial of information by the Director of Prosecution was with malafide reasons and cannot be sustained in law.
Director of Prosecution Mrs. Shobha Dhumaskar submitted before the Law Secretary that the question as to under which provision of law the legal opinion was being given does not come within the meaning and the purview of the term “information” under Section 2 (f) of RTI Act 2005. Mrs. Shobha Dhumaskar further justified the 20 days taken to reply to Adv. Rodrigues query while stating that she was busy with other official work.
Adv. Aires Rodrigues had under the RTI Act sought to know whether the Director of Prosecution/ Public Prosecutors/ Assistant Public Prosecutors have been giving legal opinion to the Police Officers investigating cases. Adv. Rodrigues had further sought to know under what provision of law such legal opinion was being given.
It may be recalled that Director of Prosecution Mrs. Shobha Dhumaskar had in a controversial legal opinion last year opined that the son of Goa’s former IGP Mr. K.D Singh should not be charge sheeted in the accident case in which he was driving his father’s official vehicle. The Chief Secretary has already directed the Law Secretary to examine that legal opinion in which the Director of Prosecution had opined that the case against the former IGP’s son be closed.

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